Sources say that food insecurity problems have been mounting in some parts of North Korea recently. Now Daily NK has learned that in some areas even the security forces, a top priority group for the regime, have been unable to secure sufficient supplies for the provision of rations.
A source from Yangkang Province revealed the news on the 25th, saying, “With the price of rice up at 6,500 or 7,000 won people can’t even dream of buying rice in the market right now. It’s not just the ordinary people either; people working for the security services didn’t even receive their full rations last month or this.”
“The NSA and PSM (National Security Agency and Ministry of Public Security) have to generate between one and two months-worth of food from their own cooperative farms," the source explained. "But with the drought then the flooding this has been impossible. Because they are finding it hard to get anything from the farms, staff members have not been provided with their distribution.”
The source went on to point out the fact that since Kim Jong Il brought in the ‘military-first policy’ in the mid 1990s, the security forces have never failed to receive their rations, even at times when many less fortunate groups were suffering.
“The NSA and PSM are the tools of domestic control that literally prop up the system,” he emphasized. “If they are not receiving rations from their home agency then that could mean problems in the system of internal controls occurring sooner or later.”
The apparent breakdown of distribution to the security services appears to be yet another result of a particularly poor growing season in the North, with undesirable conditions beginning with drought in May and ending with flooding and typhoons throughout the summer.