BEIJING – The U.N. World Food Program chief said Thursday he failed to reach an agreement in talks this week with North Korean officials on extending the agency's feeding programs in the impoverished communist country.
James Morris, the WFP executive director, said his agency would consider the results of his two days of talks in Pyongyang and planned to have more discussions with the North Korean government over the next few weeks.
North Korean officials told Morris they want the WFP to switch its focus to development aid after feeding millions of North Koreans over the past decade.
"The government there has concluded that they no longer need emergency humanitarian assistance," Morris said at a news conference in Beijing.
Morris said North Korean officials want the WFP to reduce the size of its 32-member staff, which the WFP does not want to do. The two sides also failed to agree on conditions for the WFP to continue to monitor food distributions throughout the country.