A source reported that North Korea has recently strengthened blocking the movement of residents in the form of expanding the steps necessary for issuing certificates.
It is understood that North Korea, which designated “emergency quarantine project as the number one priority for national projects” related to the novel coronavirus infection (COVID-19) at the 4th plenary meeting of the 8th Central Committee of the Workers’ Party of Korea held at the end of last year, has taken follow-up measures in the new year.
According to a Daily NK North Hamgyeong-do source on the 5th, at the beginning of this month, an instruction was issued through each inminban in Hoeryong-si that the issuance system for certificates required for moving between regions had been newly changed. As a result, it is said that the movement of residents has become more difficult.
First of all, North Korea, in principle, prohibited movement except within the boundaries of the city or county of residence, but in order to move, a ‘business trip certificate’ or a ‘travel certificate’ had to be issued.
Here, a business trip certificate had to be issued at the workplace or district office, and a travel certificate could only be issued at the time of marriage or death of a lineal ascendant. However, in the 2000s, the situation had developed in such a way that it could be easily obtained by giving a small bribe. All of these were the effects of North Korean marketization.
However, things started to change after the coronavirus outbreak in 2020. That is, I had to get a ‘check (sign)’ from the manager.
For example, if residents of Hoeryong-si wanted to move to Hamhung-si, South Hamgyeong Province, they had to explain the reason in detail, and they had to go through approval from the ‘People’s class leader → Dong general manager → Security officer in charge → Security officer → Affiliated People’s Committee → Affiliated Safety and Security Department’.
A ‘checkup confirmation’ stating that there are no special abnormalities was also required. However, there were gaps in the emergency quarantine system as well. It is said that by giving a bribe, it was possible to secretly issue a certificate without going through complicated procedures.
However, from this year, it is said that the certificate issuance system has been significantly strengthened, with the addition of approval from the ‘Security Department/Security Department Deputy Director → Political Department Director → Director → Emergency Prevention Team (solidarity) head’.
Accordingly, concerns are raised among residents that “moving to another area will be more difficult than usual”. Also, there are voices saying, “Isn’t it necessary to pay more back money (bribe) than usual in order to get a certificate issued?”
In addition, the source introduced that there is a view that it is a kind of resident control tactic, “We focus on blocking the eyes and ears of the residents rather than the practical measures necessary to live, and only come up with violent and coercive policies.”
Source: DailyNK by www.dailynk.com.
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