The party committee of Yanggang Province convened 2022’s first meeting of its Committee for Guiding Socialistic Legal Life, which declared January a month for intensive crackdowns on illegal behavior.

A source in Yanggang Province told Daily NK on Wednesday that the Committee for Guiding Socialistic Legal Life held intense discussions for two hours on the afternoon of Jan. 3. The committee designated January a month to clamp down on illegal activity, and declared that laws will be bolstered more than ever.

According to the source, the committee began by calling on authorities to protect the state and people from the schemes of hostile forces this year “using the laws of the Republic, a powerful tool of the dictatorship of people’s democracy.”

In particular, the committee pointed out that given the nature of Yanggang Province – with Hyesan, Pochon County, and Samjiyon located on the China-North Korea border – the infiltration of capitalist ideas and culture has been harming the class and revolutionary consciousness of the people, and an end must be put to all the “anti-socialist and non-socialist factors” impacting local residents.

According to officials at the meeting, the most common problem along the border region this past year was the infiltration of capitalist culture through illegal videos. The committee called for stern actions against young people watching and sharing illegal videos, a seemingly never ending phenomenon.

The committee further called for the strengthening of the legal system to eradicate reactionary behavior by eliminating illegal mobile phones to prevent the leaking of state secrets to South Korea and China or transactions involving money from “traitors” who fled to South Korea.

hyesan leaker bribe elderly smuggling gold yanggang projects phones border
A view of Hyesan, Yanggang Province, in August 2018. / Image: Daily NK

The committee underscored the need to demonstrate the effectiveness of socialist law by strictly applying the rules to reduce street commerce and wanton pilfering of forests for firewood, and by tracking phenomenon like resisting the law or bribing officials to avoid punishment.

The source said the Committee for Guiding Socialistic Legal Life designated January for a month-long crackdown on illegal phenomena to ensure their complete elimination. It also decided on measures to carry this out and to report the results to the Central Committee.

The committee also said that regardless of how good party ideology and policies are, there can be no progress in “legal activities” if the wrong executive and supervisory officials are in place, and that there would be a reshuffling of legal officials at the start of the year.

In fact, the source said there was mention during the meeting that some legal officials have harmed the image of “the sacred laws of the Republic,” hurting revolutionary unity.

The source further noted that the committee ordered that the ranks of legal officials be filled with people with professional knowledge and skills and party loyalty, regardless of where they are from or which university they attended. The places to which these new officials will be deployed were also ordered to create work conditions that will allow them to strengthen “legal controls.” 

Please direct any comments or questions about this article to dailynkenglish@uni-media.net.

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Jong So Yong is one of Daily NK's freelance reporters. Questions about her articles can be directed to dailynkenglish@uni-media.net.