DPRK humanitarian relief update

NKeconWatch blogged earlier about the US-based organizations permitted to enter the DPRK and distribute US humanitarian relief.  A list of those organizations can be found here.

Number three on the list, Samaritan’s Purse, is headed by “US religionist” Franklin Graham, son of Rev. Billy Graham, who just arrived in Pyongyang for a 4-day humanitarian relief tour.  Franklin visited the DPRK once before, in 2000 according to KCNA, and met with Kang Yong Sop, chairman of the central committee of the Korean Christian Federation, Paek Nam Sun, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Kim Kye Gwan, vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Kim Yong Dae, vice-president of the presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly, and delivered a sermon at Pyongyang’s Pongsu Protestant Church. 

Since Franklin’s mother spent 1934 living in Pyongyang, the family seems to have taken a special interest in the DPRK.  In addition to the relief they are distributing now, Samaritan’s Purse chartered a 747 cargo jet from Charlotte to deliver $8.3 million in medicine and other emergency supplies in August of 2007. It was the first private flight directly from the U.S. to North Korea since the Korean War.

Graham’s organization has been posting information on his trip here and here.  Greta Van Sustern has been posting video here: hospital visit (the most informative), monument 1, monument 2, Grand People’s Study House, Mass Games (most inaccurate), Mr. Graham’s work, taking off from Sunan Airport (interesting), Franklin Graham video 1, Video 2, and interview transcript.

Read more here:
Evangelist Franklin Graham to preach in North Korea
McClatchy Newspapers
Tim Funk
7/31/2008

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