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In North Korea, inequality assigned at birth

In North Korea, inequality assigned at birth

Posted: Wednesday, June 6, 2012 8:00 pm

WASHINGTON (AP) — In the supposed workers’ paradise of North Korea, inequality is assigned at birth, a study by a U.S.-based human rights group says.
Education, job, access to scarce food and health care, and even whom you marry all hinge on how loyal your forebears are viewed to have been to the Kim dynasty that took power six decades ago.
The study released today by the Committee for Human Rights in North Korea says all adults in the socialist state are categorized as one of three classes: loyal, wavering or hostile. The nongovernment human rights group says it amounts to a caste system.
Despite the emergence of informal markets since the late 1990s challenging state control, the study says the class system persists and is behind the discrimination and abuses faced by the lowest echelons of the North’s closed society.
“Throughout its 64 year existence, the Kim regime has claimed that North Korea is an egalitarian workers’ paradise,” said the committee’s executive director, Greg Scarlatoiu. “Yet, inequality is assigned at birth, perpetuated throughout a person’s lifetime and cruelly enforced by those in power to benefit themselves and their supporters.”
The North Korean government denies such a discriminatory class system exists. Published in The Messenger 6.6.12


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