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Germany's Paulaner spurns N. Korean leader's request for beer garden: report
BERLIN, July 20 (Yonhap) -- A German brewer has spurned a request by North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to open a beer garden and brewery in his isolated communist country, a news report said.

   Paulaner Brewery said it did not consider opening a biergarten in North Korea, according to Bild, Germany's biggest-selling daily, on its website on Thursday.

   The Munich-based brewery said its capacity is stretched thin because it plans to open beer gardens in 12 new locations, including one in the United States and two others in Russia, Moscow and St. Petersburg, according to the daily.

   The newspaper did not give details on when and how Kim made the offer.

   North Korean diplomats in Berlin were not immediately reached for comment.

   The report comes a week after the U.N. food agency said North Korea needs outside food assistance to feed 2.8 million vulnerable citizens out of its 24 million people __ the latest sign of chronic food shortages.

   "An estimated 2.8 million vulnerable people require food assistance until the next harvest in October," the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization said in a report last week.

   North Korea has its own brand of beer, Taedonggang, named after the river that flows through the North Korean capital of Pyongyang, though it was mostly out of reach for ordinary North Koreans due to its high price, according to North Korean defectors settled in South Korea.

   In 2009, the North's state television aired commercials that showed young women in traditional clothing serving frothy mugs of Taedonggang beer, billed as the "Pride of Pyongyang."

  (END)
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