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North Korea lambastes Western nations amid Afghanistan refugee crisis

North Korea said the West is responsible for disasters around the world on World Humanitarian Day. File Photo by Staff Sgt. Corey Hook/U.S. Air Force/UPI
North Korea said the West is responsible for disasters around the world on World Humanitarian Day. File Photo by Staff Sgt. Corey Hook/U.S. Air Force/UPI

Aug. 19 (UPI) -- North Korea accused the West of causing the global refugee crisis after the Taliban takeover of Kabul but made no mention of recent events in Afghanistan.

Pyongyang's foreign ministry said in a statement published to its website on Thursday, World Humanitarian Day, that the West is responsible for some of the most pressing problems around the world.

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"The ever-increasing column of refugees is the product of social upheaval and bloody conflict, fabricated by the West," the North Korean statement read, without naming or blaming specific countries.

"Nonetheless, they treat [refugees] like criminals, separating children from their parents, while condoning and encouraging human trafficking, sexual assault, slave labor and torture."

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North Korea also charged Western countries with "infringing on the sovereignty of others, interfering in internal affairs, and creating endless humanitarian disasters.

"Western countries openly carry out acts of intrusion and interference in the guise of promoting 'human rights' and 'democracy' that do not suit [the West] at all."

North Korea also said that on World Humanitarian Day the international community should "look directly at the culprit behind the humanitarian crisis and resolutely fight against the inhumane acts of the West."

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Pyongyang's reference to global refugees comes after the International Organization for Migration recently estimated more than 300,000 Afghans have been internally displaced this year and about 40,000 people are fleeing Afghanistan for Iran every week.

North Korea has yet to address the U.S. military withdrawal or the Taliban takeover.

A South Korean unification ministry source told Newsis that North Korea has in the past selectively reported on world affairs including the Afghan crisis.

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But state media has not disclosed recent events, the source said.

North Korea established diplomatic ties with Afghanistan in 1973 but after the collapse of the communist Democratic Republic of Afghanistan, all exchange was suspended by 1993, according to Newsis.

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