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Vietnam donates rice to N.Korea: state media

Published on Aug 6, 2012 8:49 PM

HANOI (AFP) - Communist Vietnam will give 5,000 tons of rice to flood-hit North Korea, official media reported on Monday during a visit by Pyongyang's ceremonial head of state.

The pledge came as North Korea's Kim Yong Nam met senior Vietnamese officials on a two-day trip aimed at strengthening diplomatic ties and expanding economic cooperation, state-run Voice of Vietnam radio reported.

Floods in North Korea have killed 169 people, left 400 others missing and washed away, and inundated tens of thousands of hectares of cropland since late June, the country's official news agency reported on Saturday.

The disaster represents a challenge for the country's new leader Mr Kim Jong Un, leading a nation that has grappled with severe food shortages since a famine in the 1990s killed hundreds of thousands.

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