Oh, and wait till you hear where:
Last October, a collapse accident at a construction site for a new National Defense Commission Building, saw 80 people lose their lives, according to a Tokyo Shimbun report from today.
The paper, citing information obtained by a South Korean government official through a source in North Korea, reported the victims were mostly laborers and soldiers affiliated with the military.
It added that in order to prevent the accident scene from appearing in satellite imagery, military authorities were tasked with clearing the wreckage within 48 hours. [Daily NK]
Such a pity that this had to happen before the NDC members moved in and kill construction workers instead.
I even reserve some pity for poor Eric Talmadge, the AP’s Pyongyang Bureau Chief, who must now tolerate another week of being scooped by upstart NK News and various guerrilla news sites, blog posts by Curtis with before-and-after imagery of the site, and my own insufferable taunts glibly suggesting that Talmadge drive to the site to debunk this unverified rumor with on-the-scene shoe-leather reporting.
Maybe the report is true and maybe it isn’t, but it’s certainly worth knowing if it is. A second fatal collapse in one year–especially at a site this critical to the regime–would be big and bad news for any leader who associated himself so closely with this crash (pun intended) construction program.