Christianity Crackdown Spreads on Kim Order

North Korea continues to mobilize resources to deal with its citizens coming into contact with Christianity in China. On the 8th,
sources conveyed to Daily NK that personnel from a number of state organs,
including the State Security Department, General Reconnaissance Bureau and diplomatic
corps, have received additional orders on the matter.

A source located in Sinuiju, North Pyongan Province told
Daily NK by phone, “State security personnel dispatched to China to catch legal
North Korean visitors learning of Christianity are continuing with their
activities. Consular employees are active in this work, as are young reconnaissance
bureau employees deployed for this specific purpose, and they are looking to
make arrests.”

“Before, [the authorities] only had a list of names but now
they use photos to find people. On the orders of the Marshal [Kim Jong
Eun], this kind of activity has been on the rise since mid-April,” the source
went on.

To illustrate just how wide-ranging the operation has become,
the source described the arrest of one woman in her 50s who had contact
with a Christian church in far-flung Beijing.  She was repatriated back to
the North after residing in the Chinese capital for more than five years.

The source said he believes that this outward expansion from the border region is a reflection of the regime’s determination to deal with
the possibility of mass desertions and thwart the potential for ideological
unrest.

This most recent directive also comes alongside Kim Jong
Eun’s heightened concern with “ideological education,” in addition to the
arrest and trial of South Korean missionary Kim Jung Wook, who is currently
serving a life sentence for “anti-state crimes.”

According to the source, “This order was handed down by the
Marshal, and all personnel in China have been ordered to execute it. There is
talk that the authorities have said they will weed out all of those with ties
to the church and that they will expose everything that has been happening in
China.” 

Several witnesses with eyes on the scene report that North
Koreans travelling legally to China are now exercising extreme caution to avoid punishment,
such as incarceration in one of North Korea’s notorious political prison camps.

One high-ranking defector told Daily NK, “They used to
blackmail travelers’ families left behind in the North, or even call them in
China and cajole them that way, but now they’ve adopted harsher methods. In
times like these you should never drop your guard around people who suddenly
initiate contact out of nowhere, or people who you might only know through an
acquaintance.”

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