|▲ In a 2004 death threat against Hwang Jang Yop, the offender was not arrested and the investigation closed.|
An incident occurred in which a death threat was made against a representative of Free North Korea Broadcasting (Free NK), Kim Sung Min, which broadcasts to the north and is operated by defectors.
On the 12th, around 3:15 PM, it was verified that a human-like doll stabbed with a fruit knife was discovered at the Free NK Office, OOO Building, Yangcheong-gu, Shin-cheong 7 dong, Seoul. (The office was used until mid-2005, but is currently moving to another location)
The doll was enclosed in a white plastic bucket with a lid, and where the knife was placed there was also a blood colored stain. Two pages of printed material was discovered on top of the bucket, consisting of threats, in relation to the broadcasting company and the Free NK commissioner, former president Kim Yong Sam.
The plastic bucket was found by the building owner’s daughter and her husband who live on the level above the Free NK office, who reported it to the police. The case was received by Yangcheon Police Office, and although a full investigation is being conducted, at this point no concrete progress has been made.
Free NK representative Kim Sung Min said “For a death threat like this occur in the South Korean society demonstrates the reality of security gaps in our society” and urged that through a rigorous criminal investigation the offender be discovered as soon as possible.
Representative Kim also said “Though a death threat has been made, parties concerned with the broadcast did not directly witness or hear specific details pertaining to the materials placed by the offender” and requested that police authorities officially reveal the full story of the case.
In addition, after commencing Shortwave Broadcasting to the north in December last year, Free NK was faced with a situation from around January 10th 2006, where normal listening was impossible because of interfering North Korean radio waves.
Henceforth, Free NK will suspend the established transmission of 5880KHz and secure the 1170KHz frequency for broadcasting from 7PM to 7.30PM. However, since 9th of last month, it was revealed that North Korea was again understood to be sending interfering radio waves.
On one hand, though there have been numerous cases of terror and death threats occurring in relation to North Korean Human Rights Organizations, there has yet to be a case where the perpetrator has been discovered.
In 2004, in front of the Association of the North Korean Defectors office, a death threat in the form of a letter and a blood stained weapon was directed at the former secretary of the North Korea Workers' Party, Hwang Jang Yop and the former president of the Yeogwang Trade Company, Kim Duk Hong. Five years earlier, in 2000, five leading activists for the Network for North Korean Democracy and Human Rights were sent dead rats, with each of their names attached to one.