Korea deports two fishermen from the North accused of killing 16 crew members

08-Nov-2019 Intellasia | South China Morning Post | 6:02 AM Print This Post

South Korea on Thursday deported two North Koreans who crossed the inter-Korean sea border to the South to avoid justice after killing 16 fellow crew members on their fishing boat, the unification ministry said.

The two men in their 20s were sent back to the North through the truce village of Panmunjom on the border.

“The government has decided to deport them as they have committed a heinous crime. They cannot be treated as refugees under international laws,” ministry spokesman Lee Sang-min said. “They could also pose threats to the life and security of our people.”

North Korea still carries out public executions, including by firing squad and hanging.

The two men were found south of the Northern Limit Line, a de facto sea border off South Korea’s east coast on Saturday. They attempted to flee when the South’s Navy tried to capture them, officials said. They were then taken to a nearby port for questioning, the ministry said.

The deportation took place after South Korea informed the North of its decision to send them back earlier this week and the North subsequently agreed to it, the ministry said.

The rare deportation occurred despite tensions between the two Koreas after denuclearisation talks stalled.

More to follow…



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