Analysis Examines Global Fund’s Suspension Of Grants To North Korea

Washington Post: North Korea has a big tuberculosis problem. It’s about to get worse.
Jeremy Youde, student in global health and international relations at the Australian National University

“A Bloomberg News report this week warned of the threat of North Korea’s ‘other weapon’ — tuberculosis. In February, the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria announced that it would suspend grants to combat tuberculosis and malaria in North Korea by June 30. Global Fund officials stress that they hope to resume funding to the country in the future, and North Korean officials have implored the Global Fund to maintain its funding on humanitarian grounds. … 1. Why did the Global Fund suspend grants in North Korea? That’s a good question — and there isn’t yet a clear answer. … 2. What is the scope of the Global Fund’s operations in North Korea? Compared with those in other countries, North Korea’s Global Fund programs are relatively small. … 3. Are TB and malaria big problems for North Korea? In a word, yes — the TB situation is particularly alarming. … 4. What will happen when the Global Fund grants end? … Suspending the grants risks creating medical and humanitarian crises. … 5. Is the Global Fund’s decision political? Maybe — it’s hard to separate any issue involving North Korea from broader international relations concerns…” (4/12).