To celebrate today’s official launch of Witness to Transformation: Refugee Insights into North Korea, we thought that we would break out the dance video. Enjoy!
As we document in our book, the Chinese government has refused to acknowledge that North Koreans crossing the border are refugees. But the North Korean regime’s ongoing efforts to maintain controls on exit have periodically given rise to tensions between the two countries. Last June, a North Korean border guard shot and killed three Chinese [...]
PIIE’s editorial director Steve Weisman‘s interview with Marcus Noland regarding North Korea’s market economy and other issues surrounding North Korea. Click here to listen to the interview.
Grain prices in North Korea are rising according to recent reports, possibly both due to disruptions in domestic markets (for instance renewed food procurements for the military) and rising prices globally. But another possibility is that the price inflation is reflective of monetary policy in the aftermath of the failed November 2009 currency reform. That reform [...]
Not all the news from North Korea is bad. This past weekend Kim Jong-il shared a cordial dinner with Naguib Sawiris, head of Orascom Telecom, the Egyptian firm which in a joint venture with the state-owned Korea Post and Telecommunications Corporation is bringing cellular telephone service to North Korea. Orascom Telecom claims more than 300,000 subscribers. [...]
If the joint New Year’s editorial is the North Korean equivalent to the State of the Union address delivered by President Obama last night, who delivered the North Korean official Republican response?
Over the last decade, the North Korean regime has gradually consolidated its sprawling prison system. The South Korean government believes that the number of political prison camps or kwan-li-so has been reduced to six, incarcerating an estimated 150,000 inmates, down from an earlier estimate of 200,000. But the focus on the political prison camps has [...]
Any signs of economic reform coming out of North Korea? A naïve reading of the joint New Year editorial (akin to the State of the Union message) might suggest so. Titled “Bring about a Decisive Turn in the Improvement of the People’s Standard of Living and the Building of a Great, Prosperous and Powerful Country [...]
Our surveys document the rising access to alternative sources of information and a growing willingness of North Koreans to listen to them. But as North Korea seeks to enter the digital age, the leakage of information can take a politically edgy form. DailyNK reports the discovery of several hundred DVDs in the East Coast city [...]
Following the death of Kim Jong Il, it seems that “collapsism” is in retreat. The tightly-scripted transition has not revealed any obvious hitches so far, and we are on the record with our doubts about collapse scenarios. Nonetheless, it is still early and the possibility remains that the outside world might have to respond to [...]