British Government Gives $660,000 to North Korea

The British government
donated $660,000 USD in Official Development Assistance (ODA) to North Korea last
year, according to a Voice of America (VOA) report released on July 9th.

The report, citing a
British government fiscal report, stated that more than half of the total sum,
$342,000 USD, was spent by the British Council on English language education programs in Pyongyang.
The program has been in place since the beginning of the century, when the two states established formal
relations, and was recently extended to 2017.

Outside this sum, $167,000 USD was given to assist the rescue work of the
Chosun Red Cross Society, while the British government also facilitated the participation of a North
Korean athlete in the International Paralympics, and provided training for
North Korean officials.

The British government
has, throughout the life of bilateral relations, cleaved to a policy of
critical engagement with the Kim regime, which, according to the official
London stance, allows for harsh criticism of human rights and other abuses
whilst also providing for progress in other areas.

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