Kim Jong Un tells officials not to make the people the enemy, leading to end of anti-socialist crackdown

Ministry of People’s Security (MPS) officers line up to play a carnival-style shooting game at a park in Wonsan, Kangwon Province. Image: Daily NK

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has reportedly ordered that the country’s legal authorities refrain from “making enemies of the people” and that the anti-Socialist crackdown that has taken place until recently has more or less been halted. Popular criticism of the crackdown was reported to the central government and this led Kim Jong Un to indirectly call for an end to the crackdown.

As spring began, the decrees posted at local police offices have been taken down and crackdowns on anti-socialist behavior started,” said a Ryanggang Province-based source on July 6. “While there hasn’t been any official reports that the crackdown has stopped, the crackdowns have stopped.”

According to the police who conducted the crackdowns, there was a great deal of backlash from the local population when the anti-socialist crackdown began.

“Those who were caught up in the crackdown said that even the police were buying rice and salt at the markets and if that was true then everyone was a part of anti-socialist activities. The police were taken aback by this degree of criticism,” the source explained.

One female smuggler who was being interrogated by police told them that they had no right to arrest her when “they also live life like ‘anti-socialists.'”

“She even told legal, Party and administrative officials to stop conducting anti-socialist activities. Some officials responded that ‘she’s not wrong,’ suggesting that they disapproved of the the anti-socialist crackdown,” he said.

As protests by North Koreans toward the crackdown continued throughout the country, legal and Party organizations sent a proposal with popular criticism of the crackdown to the central government.

“The complaints of the people seemed to have made it to the ears of the central government because the crackdown noticeably fizzled out by June,” a source in North Hamgyong Province said.

“People are happy about the change.”

She also reported that there was a mid-progress report about the anti-Socialist crackdown after Kim Jong Un had completed the Panmunjom summit.

“The report stated that that everyone, except for those living completely off government rations, are conducting anti-socialist activities. Even those conducting the crackdown are guilty of anti-socialist activities. Taken together, this led to the end of the crackdown,” she said, adding that during the mid-progress report, Kim Jong Un reportedly said that the people should not be turned into the enemy and that he would never forgive those who divide the people and the Party.”

“The central government sent down a message that any local officials who divide the Party and people will be removed from the Party and their positions.”