Following criticism, NK authorities have reportedly claimed that the relative lack of food distribution during recent KJI birthday celebrations was due to preparations for “bigger gifts” to mark the birth of KIS.
The president of a Japanese company has admitted to shipping more than 4,000 computers and other tech products to NK from 2008-2009. The deals were reportedly made after he was contacted by a NK engineer who spoke of demand for “about 1,000 personal computers a month.”
Portraits of KJU are reportedly now being hung in revolutionary history museums, and production of portrait badges depicting the leader are also underway.
FOOD AID & FOOD SECURITY
The WFP plans to extend emergency aid to NK later into 2012 than originally intended following unmet goals for 2011.
The SK govt is reviewing the idea of issuing citizenship certificates to the detainees, and lawmakers have agreed to adopt a resolution to pressure the Chinese govt and China Red Cross Society to take action.
China’s MFA reiterated China’s argument that NK defectors are not refugees, and stated that, “The UN HRC is not the right place to discuss the issue.”
Head of Free North Korea Radio Kim Seong-min has reported that China allows NK officers to disguise themselves as Chinese investigators in order to engage NK defectors. Chinese authorities also reportedly sort out detained defectors intending to go to SK from other detainees, which may illicit harsher punishment if they are repatriated.
INTERNATIONAL POLITICS & SECURITY
The USG’s Glyn Davies discussed the nuclear issue and humanitarian aid on the first day of bilateral talks with NK’s Kim Kye-gwan in Beijing. Davies characterised the talks as “serious and substantive”, which is always better than ‘frivolous and meaningless’. Daily NK and CFR on U.S./NK engagement.
SK live-fire naval drills and coinciding threats by NK prompted SK island residents to take refuge in bomb shelters, but passed without further response from NK.