During Kim Jong-Un's reign, he has given his people the right to fill their bellies with pizza and allowed women the right to wear pants in public unpunished. On Monday, he marked a new milestone: the first time Pyongyang has accepted help from Seoul. When dealing with North Korea and news from the region it's a given that you have to take whatever information its state-run news agency doles out with a grain of salt. (Remember when Kim Jong-Il's death caused a mountain to glow red?) That in mind, North Korean state-television reported (via CNN) on September 4th that cyclone Bolaven killed 48 people, injured more than 50 and left more than 21,000 homeless, but CNN reports today that the death toll could be to be higher. And, as Reuters notes, the storm caps a summer of flooding and storms which state media says ended with at least 200 people dead and more than 200,000 left homeless. Whatever the actual figures are and how awful the situation may be, it was serious enough to push Jong-un to accept aid--as CNN reported--the first time since South Korean aid was stopped in 2010 and a landmark decision since the two are legally at war. According to CNN and The New York Times, North and South Korea are now in discussion and working of what kind of aid and how much will be delivered. "The aid deal will be discussed via document exchanges through the neutral village of Panmunjom," writes CNN.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.