UNDP revamps N.Korea programs

The United Nations Development Program will not approve new projects in North Korea until an external audit ordered by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is completed. The audit will look into spending of development funds, which, U.S. deputy ambassador Mark Wallace alleged, had been funneled to Pyongyang for “its own illicit purposes.” UNDP assistant administrator Ad Melkert also announced that the agency will no longer hire Pyongyang-recruited staff and send cash payments to the North Korean government and local suppliers. U.S. Ambassador Alejandro Wolff said Washington is ?pleased with the approach that the UNDP administrator has laid out.? The agency?s projects in North Korea ? mostly training for food management and other activities – are valued at $4 million. (Sources: U.N. agency defers N. Korea programs/The Associated Press; UN program makes major changes for N.Korea aid/Reuters)

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