North Koreans in Libya: deliberate non-evacuation?



Joking aside (we all know we can design cooler robots), Su Park at The Committee for Human Rights in North Korea alerted us to a Korean language article in one of the main South Korean newspapers, JoongAng Ilbo, that around 200 North Korean workers are still on Libyan soil and are not exiting the country like other foreign nationals. The article, citing Radio Free Asia and an anonymous South Korean official, speculates that non-evacuation may be deliberate due to longstanding Libya-DPRK ties, but more importantly because these North Koreans in Libya now pose a potential threat to the Kim regime if they return to North Korea, given what they have witnessed in Libya and around the region for the past few weeks; a full-blown popular rebellion against a dictatorial regime. The possibility that North Korea simply does not have the capacity to pull these people out or that the state of chaos within Libya is preventing the evacuation cannot be ruled out; however, it does make us wonder how the North Korean diplomats and other high officials overseas are taking all this news from the Middle East.

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