RELEASE EMBARGO DATE: MAY 1, 2013 AT 9 AM
Panel: Refugees and Neighbors (Regency Room)
Date/Time: Wednesday, May 1, 2013 / 15:30-16:45
Talking Points for: Shin Beomchul, Director, Division of North Korean Military Studies, Korea Institute for Defense Analyses
After living in a market experience over ten years, North Koreans, who are less dependent to regime, are now not as loyal to Kim`s regime as before. If North Korea faces another drastic economic downturn, the possibility of North Korean refugee would greatly increase. March 31, the Central Commission of Korean Worker`s Party announced its survival strategy: advance of economy and nuclear weapons side by side. However, the intention below this two track approach is clear: North Korea wants to be a nuclear power. Emphasizing economy is nothing but a political slogan to avoid peoples` dissatisfaction. North Korea will continue its nuclear program in spite of international economic sanction, which will be tougher and broader. As a result, North Korea would face serious economic conditions soon or later. In this regard, under the Kim Jong-Un`s leadership, there is a high possibility of the revisit of economic disaster, which might cause another influx of North Korean refugee. In this regard, neighboring countries should prepare the influx of massive North Korean refugees, and the R.O.K. should play a leading role to prepare the worst scenario.