A 23-year old, poverty-stricken young woman who appeared in newspapers and on TV around the world when she was filmed by a cameraman inside North Korea died of starvation in October, it has been revealed.
The woman, who appeared in a KBS special program, “North Korea’s Third Generation Succession: Who Is Kim Jong Eun?” alongside global media including the BBC(UK) and Asahi TV(Japan) amply demonstrated the dire straits in which some North Korean people live. Reduced to rags following the death of both her parents, she said she wandered the fields looking for grasses.
Speaking with the cameraman, who asked what she planned to do with the grass, the girl, who admitted that she also slept outside, said, “I’m going to eat it.”
Speaking with The Daily NK today, Asia Press said, “According to Kim Dong Cheol, who interviewed the girl in South Pyongan Province while he was doing some research inside North Korea in June, she died on or around October 20th.”
“It was discovered that, without a home, she had been wandering in the market and on the streets, before dying in a corn field,” the Asia Press spokesperson explained, “Since then was harvest time, she went there to eat corn but seems to have died of starvation.”
Her body was apparently already decomposing by the time it was found, but the local People’s Safety Ministry agents were in no hurry to deal with it because she did not have any family, so it was left for a long time.
According to Asia Press, “The chaotic situation caused by the currency redenomination in November last year has caused an increase in kotjebi numbers across the country, and in some regions there have been people dying of starvation. She was also a victim of that impractical plan.”