North Korean leader Kim Jong-un visited a typhoon-hit area in the country’s Hwanghae province and called for all-out efforts to minimize damage to fields and a reduction in harvests, state-media reported on Friday.
The state-media reports however, did not reveal the exact day of his visit, but it appeared to have come hours after typhoon Bavi passed along the North’s western coastline on Thursday, reports the Seoul-based Yonhap News Agency.
During the visit, Kim said that the scale of damage is smaller than expected and “positively appraised national crisis control system against natural disasters taking up proper shape and the ability to counter the crisis making remarkable improvement”, acording to a report in Pyongyang’s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).
He stressed the need to “direct efforts to minimizing the damage in the agricultural fields in particular and reduction in the harvest”, while urging “an all-out campaign” of completing the recovery so that the country can mark the 75th founding anniversary of the ruling Workers’ Party next month.
Hwanghae is one of the largest rice-producing areas of the country.
The Rodong Sinmun, the official newspaper of the North’s ruling party, said that the typhoon hit farming areas in the province, in particular, dealing a blow to corn stalks, rice paddies and other crops.
Damage in areas near Pyongyang was also reported, it said but did not mention any casualties.
In an unusual move, the country’s state TV network provided real-time coverage of damage caused by wind gusts and rainfalls in recent days, showing the sense of urgency and efforts to provide updated info on the storm to people, the Yonhap News Agency reported.
North Korea had stayed on high alert as it feared Bavi could be stronger than typhoon Lingling that devastated many areas of the country last year.
Kim held a politburo meeting Tuesday, calling for stepped-up efforts to brace for the approaching typhoon and minimize damage.