Christians face execution in North Korea

North Korea remains the most difficult country to be a Christian in the world.

In a country that, understanding what is going on in North Korea is difficult to say the very least.

So often the images we see on our television screens can verge on the comical as Kim Jong-un cultivates a personality, looking to those around him to idolise him and his predecessors.

But in one disturbing area we know as much as we need to, information that is anything but comical.

Difficult though the information is to collect, there are an estimated 400,000 Christians in the secret state seeking to be the light of God’s love in the darkness that continues to engulf North Korea.

With a regime that feels threatened by groups of people meeting together to pray, the news that 33 people in the country face execution for being associated with missionaries and seeking to establish so called ‘underground’ churches  that Jong-Un believes are conspiring against him, is sadly predictable news; but news nevertheless that acts as a reminder of the secret state’s horrendous record on religious freedom.

According to Open Door’s World Watch List, North Korea remains, for the eleventh year in a row, the most difficult country to be a Christian in the world. Classed as hostile entities, Christians face multiple threats of arrest, detention, torture and in some cases public execution. As Open Doors continues:

“There is a vigorous elimination programme in existence to convert, imprison, banish or execute individuals who have converted to Christianity: Koreans who have converted after defecting to China and are later repatriated are in particular danger. Spies have reportedly been sent to China to expose networks; Christians helping defectors there have been killed. Christians are likely to remain targets of this regime.”

In a recent event in the British Parliament, one Christian who has escaped the grips of the communist regime gave a heart-wrenching account of her imprisonment because of her faith. She said of the labour camp that she was sent to:

“The walls of our barracks were bloodstained, because we killed as many fleas and lice as we could. We received only a few spoons of rotten corn meal each. The soup we ate was usually just dirty water. If we were thirsty and wanted extra water, we needed to steal it from the nearby stream, which was polluted by the garbage of the guards.”

Talking about the dead bodies which so often were stacked outside the crematorium, she continued:

“Sometimes, they rotted for days in sheds before they were disposed or burnt. The ashes whirled over the road we walked every day. Each time my feet crunched, I thought: ‘One day the other prisoners will walk over me.'”

“Nobody spoke about their faith in the camp,” she said. “Besides, I was lucky enough to be sent to a re-education camp, and I was eventually released. Most Christians are put in so-called total-control zones. Political labour camps. Nobody is ever released from there.”

Last year, an article for International Christian Concern asked what was missing from US policy towards North Korea. Its answer – the relative low profile of efforts to promote religious freedom at the expensive of a much higher profile effort to deter North Korea from its nuclear ambitious. It’s an accusation that can be levied at much of the West’s efforts in North Korea.

It is time that we in the West, blessed by the freedom we have, spoke more and spoke loudly about the plight of those in North Korea and elsewhere facing death simply for their faith. As Fiona Bruce MP has recently concluded:

“We cannot stay silent. North Korea is in breach of every single declaration of the 1948 human rights bill.”

The tragic irony is that the government of North Korea is prepared to sacrifice and put to death, out of a sense of hatred, those Christians who seek to share the good news that God sacrificed and put to death his son out of a sense of love.

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11 Responses to “Christians face execution in North Korea”

  1. Lamia

    Another triumph for revolutionary socialism.

  2. benyoudel

    How is North Korea socialist? It is clearly a military dictatorship. Marx would be horrified to see North Korea claiming to be socialist or even communist. I don’t remember deliberate famine and starving millions and running concentration camps as communist.

  3. AeronPage


  4. AeronPage

    To be fair though,it is Communist in the sense that the State has sole ownership of production, there is certainly no private property in NK?
    As for the mass militarisation and cult of Kim worship it is more akin to European Fascism, albeit itself a form of Socialism, make no mistake that the Nazi’s saw themselves as staunch Socialists, but instead of propogating the class warfare of Marx, they instead tried to unify through the sense of nationalism, hence National Socialism. They also seek the same autarky (self sufficiency) envisaged by Hitler.
    Also North Korea does have free healthcare and education to secondary level.

  5. Di

    I agree, but Marxism is not just about the means of production. There is the inequalities which are addressed firmly in the doctrine. There has never been a (Marxist) communist country throughout history because the M.O.P is exploited to benefit the state controllers. ‘Everyone is equal, but some are more equal than others’ sums it up. Orwell certainly had a point.

  6. benyoudel

    I’m not sure that he can be called socialist as although he didn’t steal Russia’s oil wealth like Putin, he was into genocide.

  7. Lamia

    I don’t remember deliberate famine and starving millions and running concentration camps as communist.

    Then you are an ignoramus. You may as well say you don’t remember death camps and antisemitism as National Socialist. Try googling ‘gulag’ Holomodor’, ‘Great Leap Forward’, ‘Khmer Rouge’ for starters. Man-made famine, starving millions and concentration camps are hallmarks of communist regimes. It’s about the only thing they were ‘good’ at.

  8. Lamia

    He was chairman of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. Not a democratic socialist, but certainly the revolutionary variety. And you can’t use the wish that your ideal communist regime wouldn’t starve millions to death of put millions in concentration camps as an excuse for the fact that in practice a number of them actually did.

  9. fanoffreespeech

    And isn’t it wonderful how the debate of iss this a communist state over shadows the horror this article conveys.

    We have the freedom to debate atheism and religion to believe in what we wish. Be thankful of the freedom we have in western society and guard them against encroachment of the state.

  10. Lamia

    I agree, but benyoudel and co would tell us we only have the illusion of freedom: unbeknownest to us, we are living in concentration camps, starving, or brainwashed to buy Coca Cola (what’s the difference?) – and at risk of being shot tomorrow. We just can’t see it.

    benyoudel is – in his mind – a daring fighter against lethal western capitalist mind control. Perhaps they’ve ‘vanished’ him already…

  11. Alexis Lokee

    ONLY GOD has the power on LIFE AND DEATH not a poor dictator.

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