Thursday, August 20, 2015

Everyday life inside North Korea, The fact

Everyday life inside North Korea, The fact
© Picture: Adrian Bradshaw / APA / EPA / picturedesk.com
Inside North Korea: facts. Everyday a prohibited country, as people's lives in the foreclosed land looks. Much does not penetrate to the outside of the life in the insular country. What we know about North Korea, based on stories of refugees, eyewitness reports of tourists and journalists and propaganda messages on the KNCA, the official news agency of the country. Some is but leaked about everyday life in North Korea.

More than 24 million people are currently living under the dictatorship of leaders Kim Jong-un. In February 2014, Commission of the United Nations (UN) has published a 400-page report on human rights abuses in North Korea. Victims and eyewitnesses spoke of hunger, torture, executions and murder. Democratic values ​​such as freedom of speech and freedom of the press does not exist. But how can you imagine the everyday life in such a country? Not much is known about life in the country screened, however, there are some revelations. Constantly telling refugees, editors or travelers on their impressions.


1. The tell-all book
Among other things, the two journalists Daniel Tudor, a reporter for the "Economist", and James Pearson, Reuters journalist, given in her book, "North Korea Confidential" a glimpse into the insular country. Both have lived a long time in Seoul, South Korea. In her book, the journalists also clean up with stereotypes that are often gegeistert by the news, as the newspaper "New York Times" reported. The people there are not robots who live only for it to their "beloved leader" to serve, the authors write. They draw a very real picture of the people and their everyday lives:

Just as in Europe, the people of North Korea can buy well-known brands such as Adidas and Coca-Cola products.

Those who live near the border with South Korea, can readily perform a phone call to South Korea.
It is increasingly common that you see sitting in a cafe young people in Pyongyang as they play with her cell phone and sipping a latte.

Many North Koreans enter USB sticks with videos, foreign films and TV shows among themselves further, including also so much pornographic material.

The drug meth (methamphetamine) has arrived in North Korea, addicts can be found in all social classes.

Even dissident residents can slowly lead a relatively normal life in North Korea. However, the strict class system sets limits in terms of social status.

2. torture, murder and other crimes
Political opponents and dissenters have it in North Korea, however, not easy: The UN has stated clearly serious violations of human rights in a report published in 2014. Only in March 2015, the UN Human Rights Council, North Korea has criticized harshly for the regular kidnappings of foreigners. Around 200,000 people should be abducted, where it is in most cases to South Koreans, who could not in time to leave the North after the Korean War (1950-1953). But travelers of other nationalities to be disappeared in North Korea.

Everyday life inside North Korea, The fact
© REUTERS / Kim Hong-Ji North Korean soldiers patrolling in the demilitarized zone.

Those who do not go with the flow, which is feeling the full force of the system. Political prisoners, people who are trying to flee the country, Christians and persons who could exert influence subversive shall be classified as a threat to the political system and the rulers according to the UN report. The report goes further out of human rights violations such as rape, sexual violence, torture, murder and enslavement.

It was also found that partial access to food is limited in order to force political loyalty. The four-lane highways to North Korea are hardly any traffic. Photos show that there are hardly any cars on the road. The average citizen owning a car can not afford. The traffic in North Korea is severely limited by economic problems and restrictions of the dictator Kim Jong-un. Gasoline is available only in certain quantities. Anyone traveling not on foot or by bicycle, traveling by public transport, mostly buses.

A tourist in 2011 published a video on YouTube showing how little is going on on the streets. "Kilometers long and wide highways, but hardly any traffic," the user writes his video. This has not changed until today.

4. Life in the capital
About North Korea's capital Pyongyang still seep through most information. Many travelers have already visited the city and reports on their excursions. At first glance, life in the relatively modern city looks like any other. Taking a closer look, fall quite a few subtle differences. The newspaper "The Guardian has lit a closer working in Pyongyang and found that: Almost every day there is a power failure. People who live in the upper floors of high-rise buildings, thus must sooner go to school or to work, to arrive on time. Because the elevators work only temporarily, if at all.

Geschminkte women are indeed a common sight in the capital, but in front of the university degree, women forego usually on makeup. Long hair is allowed, but to wear her hair loose is frowned upon.

Strict dress codes are passé: Colorful paint and foreign brands are no problem.

Many residents wear a button of state founder Kim Il-sung on their clothes.

The traffic in Pyongyang is disciplined controlled and regulated by the police. Traffic jams are given the small number of cars on the roads, however, unlikely.

Most workers in the capital have an hour for lunch. A majority of people living in the city women in employment.

In North Korea, although there are plenty of shops, but coveted goods such as closets or bookshelves and some hygiene items or certain foods like soy sauce are selling fast.

An impressive time-lapse video shows everyday life in Pyongyang. The video was released in 2014:

Everyday life inside North Korea, The fact
© REUTERS / KCNA news agency KNCA staged Jong-un as a Kim pop star.

5. light, fire
Even the images of NASA have revealed from time to time interesting facts about everyday life in North Korea. Thus, the satellites have spotted huge fires in the east of the country in April 2015th NASA believed that it is in the fire, which have been deliberately set by farmers to burn the remains of the harvest. However, some of the fires are then apparently gotten out of control, like the satellite images. In the photos immense clouds of smoke can be seen, the pull toward Japan. This phenomenon is not unique, NASA observed for several years now that the spring always been caught fire out of control.

The night scenes of NASA by North Korea prove quite some time that the current flows in North Korea at night sparse. While the neighboring countries China shine (the picture on the left North Korea) and South Korea (the picture on the right of North Korea), it remains dark in the middle. Only in the capital Pyongyang the lights burning.

6. Tour by North Korea
A tour operator has now discovered life in North Korea even as a business idea in itself: The Beijing-based firm "Koryo Tours' offers recently a Zugtour on, to discover the unknown corners of North Korea to the traveler, as the transmitter" CNN "reports. At the following places, the train is expected to continue: in the capital Pyongyang, at the foot of the mountain Myohyangsan, in the port cities of Hamhung and Chongjin and in the coastal city Wonsan. It is the first time for the tour operator that he penetrates by train in these regions. It will be interesting, what impressions will unveil from everyday life in North Korea this route yet.

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