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Chinese military on strict guard of village where N.K. soldier killed ethnic Koreans

Chinese military on strict guard of village where N.K. soldier killed ethnic Koreans

Posted February. 03, 2015 07:47,   


About one month has passed since a North Korean army deserter killed four ethnic Koreans in their homes in Nanping, Helong City, on December 27 last year.

Dong-A Ilbo reporters visited the site on Sunday. Ten minutes after getting out of the city the reporters met with a barricade set up by police, and as they went farther they were inspected twice near Nanping.

After getting out of the national highway to enter an accessway to Nanping village, the reporters saw smoke coming out of the chimneys of farmhouses. In winter, most of the 20 farmhouses in the village make fire in the furnace. It was very cold at minus 17 degrees Celsius, but smoke was coming out of just three homes. According to the villagers, a considerable number of people evacuated after the murder incident and have not returned yet.

Immediately after the incident, Chinese military and police forces stationed at a nursing home at the village entry and summoned residents to ask about the details of the accident. But on Sunday no soldiers and policemen were seen. It was quiet on the surface but residents were full of complaints. "The bereaved themselves paid for funerals and costs for autopsy," said sources who knew well the families of the victims. "The Chinese government asked the families to wait saying that it called on North Korea to compensate, but few people believe it."

"I heard that the Chinese government is pushing strongly on North Korea to reassure the residents." said a resident who was passing by the nursing home. "I also heard rumors that North Korea (as China called it to account) either punished or demobilized commanders at frontier guard troops including the head of the 27 brigade staying at Cheongjin and battalion commander at Musan where the runway soldier had belonged to." Previously, media focusing on North Korea news including Daily NK reported last month, "Due to the case threatening to turn to a diplomatic issue, North Korea dismissed general Pyongyang guard director to call him into account."

Dogs were shouting at homes, a scene not seen a month ago. "We have dogs to guard due to fear that we can also be afflicted," a resident said. "Residents has been friendly to North Korean defectors, but now fear them."

The gate of the home of one of the victims was firmly locked. The husband was shot to death in the garden and his wife at the kitchen. A surveillance camera is installed at a telephone pole near the gate.

A red flag of a border troop was hung at a house. It was the home that the North Korean deserter first dropped by when he arrived the village. The deserter stole 100 yuan (16 U.S. dollars) from the resident, who left his house after the murder incident and is still suffering from shock. There were two motorcycles and one military car in front of the house, and Chines soldiers were stationed in the village. At the house of the Nanping village head, there were three alert lamps that signaled police patrolling the house. "The lamp is always on during night time. We have no choice but to stay because it`s our home. We are also fearful," villagers said.