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N Korea at crossroads

Korea relations tested after North rebuffs South's food aid offer

Experts say China and Russia may be helping, as Pyongyang wants to appear strong

People work in a field near Pyongyang. Though North Korea has suffered from droughts and food shortages for decades, this year’s situation appears to be particularly dire.   © Reuters

SEOUL -- Relations between North and South Korea are showing new signs of strain, as Pyongyang has rebuffed or ignored recent overtures from Seoul aimed at food and economic assistance.

North Korea this month rejected an offer from the South of food aid for the North's most vulnerable citizens, which came after a report stating that roughly 10 million North Koreans are suffering from food shortages.

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