December 12, 2014 10:10
Police are taking drastic action against two women who toured the country defending the North Korean regime. One of them, a Korean American, has been temporarily banned from leaving the country as police investigate alleged pro-North Korean remarks she made at several discussion events.
Police also searched the home and office of Hwang Sun, the former deputy spokeswoman of the defunct Democratic Labor Party, in connection with the same offense.
The Korean-American woman, Shin Eun-mi, earlier ignored a police summons and planned to head back to the U.S. on Friday. Around 60 police officers raided Hwang's home and office and obtained documents related to the discussion events. The two women allegedly violated the decades-old National Security Law, which bans remarks liable to "aid the enemy."
After Shin failed to show up for questioning, police turned to the Justice Ministry to ban her from leaving the country until Dec. 20. A police spokesman said, "We took the measure out of concern that Shin would attempt to leave the country." She has been summoned again for questioning by 10 a.m. Friday.
Shin arrived in South Korea on Nov. 19 on a tourist visa and took part in discussions in Seoul, Gwangju and Daegu. Another event scheduled in Daejeon was canceled because Hana Bank, which provided the venue, objected to her appearance.
Yet another event in Iksan, North Jeolla Province on Wednesday came to an abrupt halt when a high school student threw an incendiary device on the stage. The final event in the series in Busan was canceled due to safety concerns.
Meanwhile, 19 groups representing North Korean defectors filed a complaint against Shin and Hwang accusing them of defamation. They allege that they defamed them by claiming that 80 to 90 percent of North Korean defectors wish to return to the North.
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