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`China informing N. Korea of defectors` intended destinations`

`China informing N. Korea of defectors` intended destinations`

Posted February. 22, 2012 00:32,   


China is informing North Korea that if deported North Korean defectors intended to go to South Korea or they simply wanted to leave the Stalinist country.

Defectors who wished to go to South Korea are highly likely to be sent to a concentration camp in North Korea or be sentenced to death. Pyongyang had requested Beijing to tell of where the defectors wanted to go.

A security source in Tumen, China, said Tuesday that Chinese security officials have received logs and minerals in return for sending defectors back to their country, saying, "Through different stamp colors on the papers, Beijing has informed Pyongyang of North Koreans who attempted to head for South Korea." To leave no evidence that it is helping Pyongyang, Beijing began using stamps with different colors such as red last month and blue this month.

The idea was devised as the repatriation of defectors grew into a global issue. When China and North Korea had good relations, Beijing handed over all investigative documents to Pyongyang. In the late 1990s, a North Korean security official went to China and investigated defectors, disguising himself as a Chinese investigator.

Kim Seong-min, a former North Korean army captain who is now director of Free North Korea Radio in Seoul, was once repatriated to the North. He said Tuesday, “I dared to criticize the North Korean regime when a Chinese investigator seemed to empathize with me. But when I was sent back to the North, the guy welcomed me on the North Korean side.”

Unless Beijing informs Pyongyang of defectors heading for South Korea, they will be more likely to survive even if they are sent back to the North. Since North Korean investigators cannot go to China and confirm all details, defectors can simply insist that they had no intention to go to South Korea when deported to the North. Chinese investigators say screening the destinations of defectors is pretty easy, however, as most defectors heading for South Korea are often caught with other groups of people with the same goal.