North Korean soldiers are being encouraged to steal food in preparation for war, it has been reported.
Military officers turn a “blind eye” to the looting, and in some cases it is said to be encouraged as a means of keeping up their strength – because of low army rations.
“The military officers are instructing their soldiers, exhausted after training, to eat corn in the fields because war is imminent," a source in North Hamgyong Province told Daily NK, an online news outlet focusing on the secretive communist state.
“They are even threatening their soldiers, saying ‘If you become malnourished despite permission to eat the corn, you will face difficulties.’”
Another source from Ryanggang Province, claimed: “Soldiers carrying big sacks of unripened corn can be frequently seen at the markets. They see the corn at cheap prices to merchants who have made deals in advance.”
In response, farmers have set up guard posts in an attempt to protect their crops.
Tensions between Pyongyang and Washington have been escalating in recent months. But they ratcheted up further earlier this week when North Korea launched a missile over the Japanese island of Hokkaido.
In response, US President Donald Trump said his country had been "talking to North Korea, and paying them extortion money, for 25 years! Talking is not the answer!”
It followed several other missile tests recent weeks.
The latest launch came as the United States and South Korea conducted their annual joint military exercises.
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