GoodFriends: Research Institute For North Korean Society

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North Korea Today No. 222

RESEARCH INSTITUTE FOR NORTH KOREAN SOCIETY
http://www.goodfriends.or.kr/eng
No. 222 October 2008

Crop Thieves Were Sent to the Farm Where They Stole Crops
An Exile List Came Out in Sinuiju
Special Control over Food Transports in Large Cities
Parents at Youngwoong Middle School complain because of non-tax contribution
Military Academy Discharges Tuberculosis Patients




Crop Thieves Were Sent to the Farm Where They Stole Crops
On September 15, a public trial was held for the crop thieves in Sariwon City in the North Hwanghae Province. Five people, who were caught stealing the crops, were all sentenced to work as laborers at the farm.

An Exile List Came Out in Sinuiju
On September 20, an exile list was revealed as the investigation of the anti-socialist activity was coming to an end in Sinuiju in the North Pyongan Province. The people whose names are on the list tried to use personal connections and bribery to get their name off, but it was no use. They report being deeply distressed and have lost their will to live after uselessly spending such a large amount of money. Around 150 drug-related criminals were identified from this investigation. The Central Party is mulling over what to do with them. The Party is considering life imprisonment, re-education, and deportation. However, the Party is trying to devise a fundamental measure to eradicate the drug-related crimes because these punishments won’t stop them anyway.

Special Control over Food Transports in Large Cities
In large cities such as Pyongsung in the South Pyongan Province, Sariwon in the North Hwanghae Province, Sinuiju in the North Pyongan Province, and Hamheung in the South Hamgyong Province, the food transportation roads have been blocked to prevent food from leaving the cities. Thus, food transport has become difficult for everybody. Military personnel are used to transport food, however, food is now inspected despite being transported by military. The purpose of this special inspection is to prevent food from leaving the cities because of the terrible food situation going on.

Parents at Youngwoong Middle School complain because of non-tax contribution
Beginning on September 3, for three days, the entire student population of Youngwoong (“Hero”) Middle School in Yeonsah County, North Hamgyong Province, was mobilized to pick wild mushrooms. Each student had to pick at least 5 kg of mushrooms. Any student that could not fulfill the assigned quota, had to make it up with cash.1 kg of mushrooms is being sold for between 4 and 5 thousand NK won at the market, so this directive could mean a student’s family has to give the school twenty thousand NK won or more. The parents are understandably not happy with this. A year ago, a similar high, non-tax contribution was asked for by the school, which caused many parents and teachers to complain. The school has enjoyed a good reputation – it was renamed as Youngwoong (“Hero”) because it had produced 3 heroes in 10 years; and its principal was awarded “Certificate of Exemplary Teacher” several times by the provincial education department. However, because of the burden of such high non-tax contributions, the parents are keeping their children from going to school and having them work in the fields instead. Although the school knows what has happened to these students, it keeps telling the students, “We must not expect handouts from the government, and instead must become fully self-sustaining. Picking mushrooms provides enough funding to maintain and repair the school facilities,” and is why students are asked to continue giving the non-tax contribution.

Military Academy Discharges Tuberculosis Patients
Kimchuljoo Artillery General Military School (김철주 포병종합군관학교), located in the city of Soonchun, South Pyongan Province, performed health examinations for all its graduating seniors. The results showed that there were 85 cadets who were sick with tuberculosis, hepatitis or pleurisy. The school hospital recommended all of the students be discharged, as they would not be able to effectively serve in their deployed artillery bases after graduation.
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