S. Korea sends disinfectant, blankets to N. Korea

South Korea sent a shipload of disinfectant and blankets to North Korea on Wednesday in a rush of aid to the impoverished nation after Pyongyang's promise to take initial steps to dismantle its nuclear program. Since the Feb. 13 disarmament deal, the South has agreed to ship an array of aid, including fertilizer, construction material and equipment, as well as medical supplies. On Wednesday, a cargo ship left for the North carrying 11 kinds of disinfectant and 60,000 blankets, the Unification Ministry said. The disinfectant is aimed at helping the North to cope with a recent outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease among cattle, while the blankets are part of the remainder of an aid package that Seoul pledged when the North was hit hard by floods last summer. More aid shipments are due in the coming months.