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article imageNorth Korean defector reveals life in concentration camp

By David Silverberg     Jun 25, 2012 in World
A member of the online community reddit translated the text found in illustrations of a reported depiction of life inside one of North Korea's notorious concentration camps, showing horrific torture scenes.
[Warning: Content may be too graphic for some readers]
Drawn images of North Korea's mysterious gulags have now surfaced online, thanks to the translation work of redditor ryanyang. He claims to have received drawings of life in a concentration camp from a North Korean defector, although no third-party has been able to confirm the accuracy of these depictions.
An illustrative depiction of torture in a North Korean gulag
An illustrative depiction of torture in a North Korean gulag
It's been reported North Korea's political prison camps are known to hold around 200,000 people, according to Amnesty International, as the Guardian writes. "Thousands of prisoners are thought to be held purely for guilt by association under a system of collective punishment that holds relatives responsible when an individual breaks the law."
The drawings found on reddit show various scenes of torture, such as prisoners being bitten by dogs and female prisoners made to mimic a clock's hands in what some may call a stress position. One troubling image includes the description: "Pregnancy is prohibited within the camp and if a woman is found pregnant, the wards will cut open the woman, throw the fetus away and execute her.
Other images showed beatings, corpses eaten by rats, and the hard labour endured by these political prisoners.
In March, a defector released a book about life in a North Korean gulag. "Escape From Camp 14" tells the story of Shin In Geun, "believed to be the only person ever to escape from one of the isolated communist nation's infamous gulags."
More about North korea, Gulag, Concentration camp, Reddit, Drawing
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