NATIONAL

Group for N. Korean defectors to make major announcement this week

By Park Han-na
  • Published : Feb 26, 2019 - 17:35
  • Updated : Feb 26, 2019 - 17:35

Cheollima Civil Defense, a group that claimed to have rescued a nephew of the North Korean leader, said Monday it would make a major announcement this week, possibly related to defectors who fled from the communist state.

“We have received requests for assistance from comrades in a Western country. The situation was very risky but we managed it,” the humanitarian group said in a short note posted on its website.

It did not elaborate on what the “major announcement” would be, but speculations were rife here that the group would make public its latest rescue operation for high-profile North Korean defectors in Europe or elsewhere in the West.

North Korea’s acting ambassador to Italy -- believed to be seeking asylum in Europe after going into hiding with his wife in November last year -- could have asked for help from Cheollima Civil Defense.

It is also possible that the announcement may be related to updates on Kim Han-sol, the son of the late Kim Jong-nam, the half brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, who was killed at an airport in Malaysia in February 2017 when two women smeared deadly VX nerve agent on his face.

In March 2017, Cheollima Civil Defense released a video of Kim Han-sol, saying that he was with his mother and sister following the assassination of his father.

By Park Han-na (hnpark@heraldcorp.com)