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Leaflets sent to N.K. using drone from Chinese border

Posted December. 15, 2015 07:21,   


An organization of North Korean defectors is found to have been distributing memory devices containing information on outside world using a drone from China since April. The organization named ‘No Chain’ loaded about 2,000 mini SD memory cards onto a drone, and has been spraying them in China’s border with North Korea every month.

Previously, organizations distributed leaflets by using balloons from sites near the Demilitarized Zone in inter-Korean border, and it is the first time that an organization has used a drone to send propaganda materials to the North. In tune with smart era, technology to send information on outside world into the North has evolved.

“A drone can fly in and out if North Korea more than 10,000 times, and is capable of spraying memory devices containing information on outside world precisely in target areas, among other advantages,” No Chain head Chung Gwang-il said in an interview with The Dong-A Ilbo. Chung had been in detention at Yodok camp for political prisoners in the North for three years from 2000 and defected from the Stalinist state in 2003. He is currently staging activities to improve human rights situation in the North.

The drone that No Chain is currently using is capable of flying up to 8 kilometers while carrying about 2,000 SD memory cards weighing 1 gram each. Most villages in China-North Korea border are situated in areas within this range. Since the drone uses the GPS, the drone dumps memory cards at the coordinates that are marked in advance and return to the location of departure as programmed, if it is set in "automatic" mode.

The memory devices sprayed from the drone in North Korea contain videos that promote the superiority of capitalism and the need for reform and opening of the North. Chung’s strategy is to avoid inclusion of videos that could excessively anger the regime.

Chung said he practiced flying technique to use the drone in Jebu Island in Hwaseong City, Gyeonggi Province for one month last year. “I learned that a drone can fly up to an altitude of 2 kilometers, but generally, it is not spotted with naked eyes from 500 meters away, with its sound inaudible when it is flying at an altitude of 700 meters to 800 meters,” he said. The drone that the group sends into the North flies at an altitude of 700 meters to 800 meters. The drone used in the mission costs more than 20 million won (16,900 U.S. dollars) each to buy in Korea, but it only costs about 6 million won (5,000 dollars) in China, according to Chung.