ISR sends developmental humanitarian aid to DPRK

News and Press Release
Originally published
Report on Phase I of ISR Programs in North Korea

Major Accomplishments: 1998 - 2002

Medical and Health Aid Programs in DPR Korea

From 1998 to 2002, the Institute for Strategic Reconciliation , a 501(c)(3) nonpartisan independent think tank and developmental relief organization, has sent over $15 million value of essential medicines and medical supplies in eleven shipments to North Korea (DPRK). The target beneficiaries were children, elderly, pregnant/nursing women, and disabled. The ISR "Reconciliation Ambassadors with Medicines" (RAMs) have made periodic visits to DPRK to oversee medicine distribution, and assess the nation's developmental relief need for health and education for long-term programs. DPRK has shown RAMS the points of medical distribution, presented the list of hospitals receiving ISR aid, and made joint decisions with ISR on major issues for public health programs delivered by ISR.

Research and Studies

From 1999 to present, ISR has presented over 50 briefings of DPRK food and health crisis to policy makers in the U.S. government, the NGO community, and international gatherings of stakeholders. Major decision-making audience included the US Agency for International Development, international relations committee of the US House, and European Union, among others.

Washington North Korea Forum

From 1999 to present, ISR has hosted 12 forums on critical issues of DPRK on national rehabilitation, health crisis, long-term relief and development, and energy rehabilitation among others. The forum has become the meeting place of all concerned about Korean issues, encouraging frank discussions on policy options. The participants represented non-governmental organizations, think tanks, academic institutions, governments, and business community. The prominent speakers in the Washington North Korea Roundtable were among others:

  • Milton Amayun (Vice President, International Aid)

  • M. Aslam Aziz (Minister Counselor of Development Affairs, European Union)

  • Asaph Young Chun (President, Institute for Strategic Reconciliation, Inc.)

  • Patrick Cronin (Director of Research and Studies, US Institute of Peace)

  • Bruce Cumings (Norman and Edna Freehling Professor of International History and East Asian Political Economy, University of Chicago)

  • Donald P. Gregg (Chairman, The Korea Society and former US Ambassador to South Korea)

  • Mark Kirk (US House of Representatives, Former counsel of the US House Committee on International Relations)

  • John Merill (Korea Analyst, US Department of State)

  • John B. Mulligan (Director of Project Operations, Korean Peninsula Energy Devlopment Organization)

  • Andrew Natsios (Director of the US Agency for International Development, former Senior Fellow, U.S. Institute of Peace)

  • Kathleen Newland (Senior Associate of International Migration Policy Program, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace)

  • Soon Paik (Economist, US Bureau of Labor Statistics)

  • Richard Ragan (Director for DHH, National Security Council)

  • Ed Reed (Country Director for DPRK, World Vision)

  • Syngman Rhee (Moderator of Presbyterian Churches USA, 2000 - 2001, President of National Council of Christian Churches USA, 1992)

  • Joseph Scalise (Director, UN World Food Programme Washington Office)

  • David Shear (Deputy Director of the Office of the Korean Affairs, US Department of State)

  • Mike Spirtas (Senior Fellow & Director of Foreign Policy Program, Center for National Policy)

  • Stephen Szabo (Professor of European Studies, SAIS, Johns Hopkins University)

  • Joelle Tanguy (Executive Director, Medecins Sans Frontieres/Doctors Without Borders)

  • Marc Vogellar (Director of the Public and External Promotion and Support, The Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization (KEDO)

  • Young-Kwan Yoon (President, Korea Institute for Future Strategies, and Professor, International Relations, Seoul National University)

  • Philip W. Yun (Senior Advisor to the Assistant Secretary of State Stanley O. Roth, and Washington liaison and staff representative for former Secretary of Defense Dr. William Perry, Special Advisor to the President for North Korea Policy, 1998 - 2000)
International Reconciliation Forum

From 2000 to present, ISR has hosted the three international reconciliation forums featuring influential scholars and policy makers on Korea, which CNN and major media covered.

Advocacy and Partnership

ISR helped coordinate NGO appeals to US policy makers on engagement and reconciliation with DPRK. Among others, ISR ran a national advocacy campaign to appeal the US government to send 500,000 tons of American wheat surplus to DPRK. The US government provided 300,000 tons of wheat aid to DPRK. The ISR is a founding member of the InterAction DPRK Working Group, a consortium of about 30 international NGOs working in DPRK. ISR highly values partnership with international NGOs and UN agencies as well as think tanks.

Current and Future Programs

The ISR's next 3-year programs (2003 - 2005) in DPRK will be shifting towards 'Humanitarian Development' in three areas: 1) medical rehabilitation of the disabled, patients, children, and pregnant women, 2) tailored Information Technology education of teenagers studying towards the reconciled Korea, and 3) implementation of micro-credit enterprise projects for women for sustained development.

Reconciliation Vision 2020

The Institute for Strategic Reconciliation shall be the most powerful resource of information, research, and experience by the year 2020 to fulfill global responsibilities of reconciliation in conflict regions in Asia, Middle East and Africa. These responsibilities will be carried out by a new generation of reconciliation builders empowered to give up their own comfort, volunteer professionals prepared to build up a new generation of reconciliation leadership, and global enterprises transformed to use up their strength and diversity in producing sustainable reconciliation and peace.

For partnership programs or questions contact:

Young Chun, President
Institute for Strategic Reconciliation
19017 Dellabrooke Farm Way, Suite 101
Brookville, MD, USA
Voice: 301 570 3948
202 251 0581
FAX: 301 570 0911