Two new reports from The Daily NK update us on Kim Jong Un’s efforts to (as Don Gregg put it) “change the nature of his country.”
Certain areas bordering China in Yangkang Province have been labeled “danger zones” as the latest effort by the North Korean authorities to beef up surveillance and inspections in the region. This move, in conjunction with the installation of new radio wave detectors to track down those making international calls, is the latest measure aimed at preventing defections and information from spilling outside the borders.
“In a recent inminban [people’s unit] meeting, there was a lecture on how certain areas adjacent to the border such as Hyesan and Baekam County have been designated ‘danger zones’ by the State Security Department [SSD],” a source in Yangkang Province told the Daily NK on Wednesday. [Daily NK]
On the other side of the border, even as China threatens to veto U.N. action on human rights, it is allowing North Korean security forces to hunt down refugee defection brokers.
North Korea has been deploying state security officials disguised as travelers with special personal visas or traders to China as an attempt to weed out brokers that aid defectors in escaping the country, a local source told the Daily NK. [Daily NK]
Meanwhile, Rimjin-gang passes along rumors of “two sets of executions” of party officials that “took place in Pyongyang in early October,” for “neglect on the job” and “forming a secret organization.” I’d treat the report with caution, at least until the AP summons the gumption to give it a corporate seal of authentication.