North Korean workers rebel against orders to work at the Samjiyon construction site
A group of workers ordered to North Korea’s banner construction project site in Samjiyon county without advanced notice have refused to comply with the directive, putting the authorities on the back foot, sources in the region report.
“The Party Committee in Kimjongsuk County gathered plasterers from local factories and told them they were going to take part in repairs of buildings in the area,” a Ryanggang Province-based source told Daily NK.
“Then, party committee members told the assembled workers that they would be sent to Samjiyon as a shock brigade, placed them on a truck and tried to send all 25 of them off to the construction site. The plasterers didn’t just go along with it. They refused to take part in the forced mobilization and jumped off the truck at a hill near Mintang Station.”
In October 2018, Kim Jong Un ordered that the Samjiyon construction project to be finished in October 2020 – the 75th anniversary of the founding of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK) – rather than 2021, and officials have increased the number of workers on the construction site accordingly. Officials are also forcing local residents to provide materials and even money to help pay for the construction project.
Workers at the site are facing very poor working conditions, suffering from the cold in temporary dwellings and even starvation, according to an additional source in Ryanggang Province. ......