Kim Jong Un is so concerned about the welfare of his people that he can’t sleep at night anymore.
The North Korean dictator has reportedly acknowledged, for the very first time after assuming power in 2011, that his people are suffering due to widespread poverty.
He addressed his dutiful citizens on Friday, saying they “never enjoyed an abundant life,” as he revealed a paper he wrote to promote the country’s livestock industry.
“Kim said the most important task is to boost the living standards of North Koreans quickly, and developing the livestock and fisheries industries could go a long way to solving the North's chronic food shortages,” reported the Chosun Ilbo, a leading Korean newspaper.
Poverty and food crisis are some of the most pressing issues in North Korea, independent investigations by human rights groups have found. Amnesty International stated in a report that a majority of the people of the reclusive state remain dependent on food aid from other countries:
“The government policy still prevents the swift and equitable distribution of this aid, while the population is denied the right to freedom of movement, which would enable people to go and search for food.”
The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) prepared a report on North Korea’s food crisis in April 2013. It stated ”around 6 million people in the country don’t have enough to eat, and nearly a million of them are children under five.“ According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the hermit kingdom is “the most persistently food-insecure” Asian country after Afghanistan.