Typical Appearance of Prisoners

The political prisoners looked as if they were wearing rags with the patch-ups indistinguishable from the original clothes. Also, their hair was all curled up, not having been combed for a long time. They were so weak that they had to lean against the tools they were working with. They looked like Africans with dark complexion, all bones and skin, men, women and children alike.

We guards could not believe what we saw for the first time and remained speechless for a little while. Then, we began to whisper to each other, “Are you sure they are human?”

Political prisoners detained from a young age are dwarfed, their growth retarded by malnutrition and hard labor. The average height of political prisoners in all the settlements is perhaps 145~150 cm, an indication that many of them arrived at a young age.

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