Residents counter that communal toilets are dirty, and that house repairs are needed much more desperately. In North Korean villages with single-story houses, such as the one in this file photo, there are communal toilets for every two or three neighborhood units. In an effort to improve hygiene, North Korean authorities are ordering residents outside the capital to demolish their private outhouses and upgrade or construct public toilets – at their own expense, sources in the country told Radio Free Asia. People who live in apartments often use communal toilets with their neighbors, and in rural areas, residents build outhouses detached from their homes. With no more outhouses, residents have no reliable source of human waste at collection time.
In this Nov. 19, 2020 photo, neighbors gather for kimjang for winter at a home in Pyongyang, North Korea. In years past, North Koreans could depend on their government-assigned jobs to provide them with ingredients for kimjang, but not so this year, the second source said. Photo: AP“Red peppers are one of the key ingredients of kimchi, but residents have no choice but to pickle kimchi without pepper,” she said. There are non-spicy varieties of kimchi made without chili peppers, but the red, spicy varieties are more common. “At least, Chongjin City faces the sea, so some residents who make kimchi can pickle the vegetables with seawater,” she said.1 month ago Radio Free Asia
"Police will take follow-up actions seriously in accordance with the law on whether the incident has breached the National Anthem Ordinance or any other legislation of Hong Kong, including the Hong Kong National Security Law." The national security law, which heralded a citywide crackdown on dissent and mass exodus of people in the wake of the 2019 protests, bans public speech or actions deemed likely to "incite hatred" of the government, while the national anthem law bans any speech or actions deemed to be disrespectful to the Chinese national anthem. In September, a 43-year-old man was arrested for "sedition" after playing Glory to Hong Kong on the harmonica at Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral vigil in Hong Kong. The Hong Kong Rugby Union said future errors of this type would mean the Hong Kong team's "immediate withdrawal from competition." He said the Hong Kong Rugby Union would launch its own investigation to study ways to ensure the incident is never repeated.17 days ago Radio Free Asia
The military ordered the soldiers to write home, but used the contents of their letters to punish some of them. Customers buy flowers for Mother's Day in Pyongyang, North Korea, on Nov. 16, 2022. Letters written by North Korean soldiers to their mothers were opened and examined by military security officials, resulting in more than half not being delivered, sources in the country told RFA. North Korea’s military ordered soldiers to write letters to their mothers ahead of the country’s Mother’s Day, which was on Wednesday, but military censors destroyed more than half of them for ideological reasons, sources in the country told Radio Free Asia. To make matters worse, the censors even used the contents of some letters to identify and punish problematic soldiers, sources said. Instead they made the mistake of asking about their mothers’ wellbeing, the second source said.15 days ago Radio Free Asia
The fraudsters “made fake visas to trick them” after “learning the trick from Thailand.”Lao laborers usually enter foreign countries on tourist visas to look for jobs. “They make fake tourist visas and sell them for high fees to workers who want to go to work in South Korea,” he told RFA. Some of the workers with the fake tourist visas could not enter the country and had to return to Laos, he added. Laotians must have a passport and a “yellow book” issued by the Labor Ministry that allows them to work legally in South Korea, he said. Laotians can go to South Korea to work legally if their documents are issued by the ministry, the person said.24 days ago Radio Free Asia
A South Korean Air Force's F-15K fires an air-to-surface missile towards the north of the maritime border with North Korea, in this handout provided by South Korea's Defence Ministry on November 2, 2022. South Korea blasted North Korea’s latest barrage of missiles, particularly one that crossed a disputed maritime border and landed near a South Korean island, prompting sirens on the island to wail and residents to seek shelter Wednesday morning. According to data from the Netherlands-based BNO News, the barrage represented 11 percent of the total number of missiles launched by North Korea since 1953. “Pyongyang is also on a campaign to provoke anxiety in South Korea by raising tensions at a time when the country is in mourning. South Korea’s Foreign Ministry said in a news release that Foreign Affairs Minister Jin Park and U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken denounced North Korea’s launches during a phone call.1 month ago Radio Free Asia
Hong Kong demands investigation amid questions about whether it was human error or intentional. The song, “Glory to Hong Kong,” which calls for democracy and liberty, rose to prominence during the widespread protests in Hong Kong in 2019 against increasing encroachment on civil liberties by mainland Chinese authorities. Normally, China’s national anthem, which praises communism, is played whenever Hong Kong sports teams play internationally. “The Hong Kong government is aware that it is a weak and unpopular government,” Hui said. “[He] claimed that it was an individual in Hong Kong who plotted to have someone meddle with the Chinese national anthem.18 days ago Radio Free Asia
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un attends the ground-breaking ceremony for the construction of flats in the Hwasong area Pyongyang, in this undated photo released Feb. 13, 2022, by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA). North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s ambitious plan to build 50,000 new homes in the capital of Pyongyang has ground to a halt due to a lack of funding, sources in the city told Radio Free Asia. Kim promised at the ruling Korean Workers’ Party Congress in January 2021 to build 50,000 houses by the end of 2025, with a target of 10,000 new homes by the end of each year. The 10,000-home construction project is a major priority for the North Korean government. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un inspects the construction site for households in the Songsin and Songhwa areas of Pyongyang, in this undated photo released March 16, 2022, by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).17 days ago Radio Free Asia