North Korean authorities are punishing mourners who failed to exhibit sincere sadness and despair after the death of Kim Jong Il on Dec. 17, the Daily NK reported Wednesday.
The online North Korean newspaper, which is published by opponents of the governing regime, said a source in North Hamkyung Province revealed the information. The source told the paper “authorities are handing down at least six months in a labor-training camp to anybody who didn’t participate in the organized gatherings during the mourning period, or who did participate but didn’t cry and didn’t seem genuine,” according to the Daily NK.
There are an estimated 200,000 offenders and families held in North Korean prison camps, according to a May 2011 report from Amnesty International. The report details two types of camps known as “zones.” One zone, known as a Total Control Zone, is for people who have committed “serious crimes.” People in these camps are never released.
The second type of zone, called a Revolutionary Zone, are camps for people who have committed what North Korean authorities perceive as less serious crimes. These crimes may include making critical comments toward government policy or trying to cross the border. Sentences in Revolutionary Zone camps can range from a few months to 10 years
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