North Korea publicly executed around 80 people earlier this month, many for watching smuggled South Korean TV shows, a South Korean newspaper reported on Nov. 11 last year.
The conservative JoongAng Ilbo cited a single, unidentified source, but at least one North Korean defector group said it had heard rumors that lent credibility to the front-page report.
The source, said to be “familiar” with the North’s internal affairs and recently returned from the country, said the executions were carried out in seven cities on Nov. 3 last year.
In the eastern port of Wonsan, the authorities gathered 10,000 people in a sports stadium to watch the execution of eight people by firing squad, the source quoted one eyewitness as saying.
Most were charged with watching illicit South Korean TV dramas, and some with prostitution.
Several of the cities, including Wonsan and Pyongsong in the west, have been designated as special economic zones aimed at attracting foreign investment to boost the North’s moribund economy.
1. smuggle v.
走私 (zou3 si1)
例: He was accused of smuggling guns.
2. prostitution n.
賣淫 (mai4 yin2)
例: Public opinion condemns prostitution.
3. moribund adj.
垂死的 (chui2 si3 de5)
例: The moribund patient showed no fear in the face of death.