Several days ago, I reported that the Shenyang Four would be allowed to leave China safely. This latest report doesn’t directly contradict that, but …
A diplomatic source in Seoul said yesterday the United States will accept three of four North Korean asylum-seekers now in the U.S. Consulate General in Shenyang, China. The source said Washington had informed Seoul of the decision.
The four North Koreans first entered the South Korean diplomatic premises in that city, but on May 6 climbed over a wall that separates the U.S. and South Korean facilities to ask for refuge in the United States. Officials in Seoul said the defectors included three men and a woman.
The United States reportedly decided to reject one man because he was once employed by the North’s State Security Department, which monitors residents and operates political prisons in the reclusive communist country. Seoul and Washington, the source continued, are discussing what to do with him; resettlement in South Korea is a possibility.
The United States, as a rule, does not accept those believed to have been persecutors as refugees. I suspect that’s what’s going on here, but that’s strictly my own speculation, as educated by this report.