SEOUL, South Korea – Twin typhoons are renewing fears of a humanitarian crisis in North Korea, where poor drainage, widespread deforestation and crumbling infrastructure can turn even a routine rainstorm into a catastrophic flood.
Typhoon Bolaven struck the North on Tuesday and Wednesday, submerging houses and roads, ruining thousands of acres of crops and triggering landslides that buried train tracks — scenes that are all too familiar in this disaster-prone nation. A second major storm, Typhoon Tembin, is forecast to dump more rain on the Korean Peninsula on Thursday and Friday.
The storms come as North Korea is still recovering from earlier floods that killed more than 170.
Foreign aid groups contacted Thursday say they are standing by to help but have not received new requests from the government.