Communist and post-Communist oppression North Korea | 08 August 2023

North Korea: Number of defectors doubles

Show: false / Country: North Korea /

In the second quarter of 2023, the number of defectors reaching South Korea has doubled, reported NK News on 18 July 2023.

World Watch Research analyst Thomas Muller gives some perspective: “To a certain extent, the increase should not come as a surprise. While the North Korean regime is still very cautious about allowing international contacts because of pandemic health scares, the increase in numbers is more due to a relaxation of the COVID-regulations in China, making it easier for escapees to reach South Korea. At the same time, it should not be forgotten that we are talking about very low numbers overall. In the second quarter of 2023, only 65 people made it to the South (18 men and 47 women), bringing the total number for 2023 to 99 so far. This is a far cry from the levels before the pandemic struck: In 2019, the last full year before the pandemic, 1047 escapees reached South Korea.”

Thomas Muller adds: “At the same time, Kim Jong Un seems to feel ever more self-secure at the top. He reportedly approved the first paintings of himself to be shown at a state art exhibition (NK News, 26 July 2023). While statues of himself are yet to come, this collection of official portraits is another clear sign of the growing personality cult around him.”


Our site uses cookies


We use cookies and other technologies on our website. Some of them are essential, while others help us to improve this website and your experience. We use them, among other things, to offer you an option for secure donations and anonymously evaluate access to our website. It also allows us to share our own YouTube videos on the website. Depending on the function, the data is passed on to third parties and processed by them. More information on The use of your data can be found in our Privacy Policy. You can revoke or adjust your choice at any time under Cookie Settings.

Accept all
Accept Neccessary