South Korean Man Returns From North, is Immediately Arrested

A South Korean, No Su-hui man crosses the border between North and South Korea and is immediately arrested.

This week saw some pretty sensational scenes unfold on the normally serene Panmunjom Joint Security Area that divides the two Koreas. South Korea unification activist Roh Su-hui, who had illegal entered North Korea this March to try and promote Korean unification (although many normal Koreans in the South see him as a dictator-worshipping useful idiot) suddenly became centre stage for the North Korean propaganda machine as hundreds of people stood on the Northern side of the border to see him off.

However, almost as soon as he set foot on South Korean soil (or, gravel, as that particular side of the border actually is) everything went a bit Checkpoint Charlie. Roh was immediately restrained by South Korean authorities (after a short struggle) and carried away by a group of security officers, handcuffed and bound with rope (see above — South Korean media has incidentally censored the rope and handcuffs in much of their coverage). Useful information on subsequent the events that unfolded can be found here.

The Twittersphere was awash with frustrated netizens who were less than sympathetic to Roh’s aims. The below two YouTube videos are from the official North Korean YouTube account (South Korean readers beware: viewing North Korean material in South Korea is illegal but the government hasn’t got round to censoring YouTube… yet! View at your own risk).

The first clip documents Roh’s visit to Pyongyang and the rather dramatic broder crossing. The second official video can only be described as the 1980’s Kenny G inspired porn music remix of the first video, but more dramatic.

From YouTube:

A South Korean, No Su-hui man crosses the border between North and South Korea and is immediately arrested.

A South Korean, No Su-hui man crosses the border between North and South Korea and is immediately arrested.

A South Korean, No Su-hui man crosses the border between North and South Korea and is immediately arrested.

Top Tweets from Twitter:

하태경 [email protected] [Saenuri politician and North Korean defector]:

Given the fact that Roh Su-hui wasn’t able to meet any North Korean elites, it’s probably fair to say that he’s just a tool for the North Korean regime — but he has no idea, just like his fellow North Korea sympathisers.

jungkwon chin [email protected] [Prominent academic]:

What I hate about this Roh Su-hui fiasco is that the newspapers are saying ‘conservatives protest, liberals welcome Mr Ro’. The thing is, the people protesting aren’t really conservatives, and those greeting him aren’t really liberals.

독수리3호 ‏@ 3Eagle3rd:

Chin jung-kwon said ‘Hey, Lee Seok-gi and Kim Jae-yeon! Why don’t you go and welcome Roh Su-hui?’ http://news.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2012/07/05/2012070501824.html Chin Jung-kwon is basically anti-rightist, yet he’s on the same page regarding commie issues. What’s he hiding by criticising commies?

byun hee jae @pyein2 [Political pundit and founder of Bignews]:

‘Roh Su-hui’s stupid pro-North act: his fellow criminals from the opposition parties, Rhyu si-min, Han Myeong-sook and Baek Nak-chung must confess: http://bignews.co.kr/news/article.html?no=236545

꿈꾸는뭉치 [email protected]:

If it’s necessary, I’m in full support of the investigation and punishment of Roh Su-hui. But what are you gonna do about Princess Park Geun-hye [who also illegally visited North Korea]? Is it money that decides whether who’s innocent or not?

연장然掌【反부정부패】 [email protected]:

I think this Roh Su-hui guy seems suspicious. He sneaked into the North right before the general election (24th March) and stirred-up the whole ‘anti-North’ sentiment thing. Look at the timing of his return to the South: The Senior Secretary to the President for Public Relations showed his intention to resign today because President Lee tried to push the Korea-Japan military agreement. The funny thing is, the press has been informed about Mr Ro’s every move for all those months.

jhlee [email protected]:

His specialty is demonstrations and disseminating propaganda, which is useless in North Korea, the ‘paradise on earth’, as he calls it. He can sell off this country along with all the fucking leftists and the Democratic United Party.

jung moon lee [email protected]:

By visiting the corpses of the Great Leader and Dear Leader, Roh Su-hui became the new Flower of Unification. It’s the fastest way to become a lawmaker. What a great country we live in.

아바이연합은테러집단. [email protected]:

Roh Su-hui came back through Panmunjom: what a huge chunk of meat for the conservatives! A North Korean defector called Mr Park is talking to the tabloid press as if he was an experienced national security officer on North Korean affairs. The information provided by him is far too specific to believe its validity. You North Korean defectors better just shut up and eat your meal!

보수/SaRang(박원순/곽노현심판) [email protected]:

He is officially a spy, yet no significant measure against him seems to be taking place. I can’t sleep! //A prominent ally with the opposition parties, Mr Ro came back from an extravagant trip to North Korea. http://t.co/gxq3lB6H

Su [email protected]:

Some people are trying to dismiss his act as a trivial criminal case. But he’s the vice president of the Han-race Association that deeply engages in the general election on behalf of the opposition parties.

고은태 [email protected]:

‘Roh Su-hui apologised to North on behalf of President Lee’ http://bit.ly/MXackj The government has to punish this moron with the immigration law. Don’t make him a hero. Shit.

통천 [email protected]:

Roh Su-hui illegally went to the North on the 24th March and he’s coming back through Panmunjom, which we must not allow. We’ve got to send him back!

장원재 [email protected]:

Roh Su-hui, vice president of the Han-race Association spent more than 100 days in the North, mourning Kim Jong Il’s death. Now he’s coming back. We’ll allow you to come on one condition: follow the same way North Korean defectors normally have to use to escape from the North.

박영산 [email protected]:

Roh Su-hui is South Korean yet he illegally visited the North and praised the regime. He’s worse than a spy. Despite all of what he did, is it fair to abolish the National Security Act as pro-North people demand?

이화수 [email protected]:

Roh Su-hui has to stay in North Korea, praising the dictators. Then we can ship all those North Korea sympathisers off to the North.

Brian Lee [email protected]:

Roh Su-hui is coming back as soon as the pro-North issue gets stabilised. He didn’t dare come back, to keep pro-North people out of harm’s way, as they were in deep trouble. He’s just like the North having been anxious about protecting Juche followers.

Kang Jun hu [email protected]:

Roh Su-hui didn’t even bother to think about the consequences of his illegal visit to the North; the National Security Act must be a joke for him. I don’t think he would be so comfortable with the prospect of serving time in jail after such an extravagant trip. He’s got such thick skin.

강산해 [email protected]:

Roh Su-hui, who was served by North Korean beauties day and night during the illegal visit to the North, is coming back. Now he’s facing his own harsh reality. I wonder what’s going through his mind right now. Hey, Roh! You must be so scared!

구단 [email protected]:

Roh Su-hui, who illegally visited the North and praised the Dictator Kim’s family, is coming back. The law has to punish this guy with a maximum sentence, setting an example to prevent copycat visitors to the North.

farmers-burn-effigies-of-roh-and-kim-jong-un

Angry farmers burn effigies of Roh and Kim Jong-un in Seoul.

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  • Chucky3176

    We have a large number of pro-North Korean sympathizers who idolize the Kim family and the Juche ideology. They are a loud boisterous voice of minority.

    But the National Security Law which restricts South Koreans from visiting and sympathizing with the North’s government, should be scrapped. The arresting of this guy at the DMZ, is simply ugly, and it only plays to his goal, to become the martyr and earn publicity to show the world that South Korea is not free.

    Instead, I would like to see an immigration reform. Any South Korean who visit North Korea without informing the government, shall forfeit their citizenship and thus denied re-entry into South Korea. Under this law, this useful idiot (who by the way, is a well known North Korean troublemaker), will have to stay in North Korea indefinitely.

    • skippy

      I agree with “Chucky”. Oh! you scary, mass-murdering doll!

    • redwhitedude

      They should all be deported to NK. If they like NK so much why not send them there.

    • tim

      This law is technically impossible – unless Korean constitution, basic laws and consensus are maintained.

    • lamster

      You’re either,
      a paid troll
      Very ignorant
      No political understanding
      No knowledge of Korean History.
      Not Korean (probably taiwanese or japanese)
      A descendent of mixed Korean ancestry (jurchen, mongolian, chinese, japanese, whatever)

      To the REAL average Korean, North Korea is our homeland and our people. Kim Jong Un is doing a very good job keeping our history and our people protected. Don’t forget our 4000 year history.

      • Brett Sanbon

        I dont believe that you are Korean.

        I think Chucky’s response was quite reasonable. I also think any Korean who calls a member of the Kim dynasty a “protector of the people” is seriously misinformed or a traitor…. or a troll. Which one are you?

        Dont forget Korea’s most recent 100 years of history.

      • Yu Bumsuk

        So what’s stopping you from immigrating to NK?

        • Yu Bumsuk

          Sorry, the above comment was meant for lamster, not Brett.

          • lamster

            Are you kidding me? It’s my dream to live in North Korea after North annexation of South Korea.

          • mr. wiener

            Lamester.
            Why wait?

  • lavista4u

    South Korea should be ashamed of themselves for hand cuffing and forcefully taking him away, its human rights violation…ohh, well, If American friends do this, its ok….If North Korea would have done the same thing….We could have accepted “sanctions” from “International Community”

    What a joke

    • Zvi

      He’s will survive South Korean detainment and most likely he will return to his legislative job after the stink is over. If he was a pro-South agitator in North Korea, then upon his return, he would be hastily put to death without any kind of remotely judicial proceedings, and anyone who talked about it would be sent to a gulag.

    • glenn

      “South Korea should be ashamed of themselves for hand cuffing and forcefully taking him away..”
      – do you have any idea what NK does to anyone who goes to SK and returns to NK w/o any permission from their “GREAT LEADER”?

      • mr. wiener

        More’s the pity , you are correct. How kind of the South Koreans to have handed the North such a well choreographed propaganda coup.

        • redwhitedude

          I’m not quite sure if this is a propaganda coup. It seems that North Koreans sort of know that SK isn’t the crap hole that the propaganda makes it out to be. All those SK CDs and DVDs smuggled into north Korea.

          • Alexei

            If anything this is a “propaganda coup” for the ROK. North Koreans are tortured and shot for trying to leave the country- South Koreans can visit an enemy country, come back across the DMZ and spend a few years (or even months) in jail and then return to normal life. This is similar to the Lim Su-kyung affair. Everyone in the north assumed she would be shot when she crossed the border, they saw she was just handcuffed and realized- the South Korean govt. actually respects human rights

  • glenn

    ROh Su Hui is playing its role in the NK propaganda. Even while watching the video, you would get this feeling that they know what will be the consequence of RSH’s act and decided to get as much media as they can. RSH should be deported to NK.

    People should realize that unification can only exist when both parties are ope to it. But we all know that n the NK ‘s side, the rich and military officials wouldn’t want to lose their grips and on the SK’s side, they don’t want their economy to be dragge down during the process.

    • Chucky3176

      Korean economy will not be dragged down during the unification process. We’ll just unplug all the South Korean factories in China and plug them in North Korea while still maintaining the DMZ. Unlike what the media pushes, North Koreans will not flood the South, as long as they are fed with aid until they start their economic boom by taking business away from China.

      • redwhitedude

        It’s going to be a painful bit of unification. China is propping up NK so they can mine resources of it without the protest of setting up mines and factories back in China. NK will never get anywhere their obsession with control will never allow for any substantial reforms. This guy along with NK sympathizers should just be sent to NK. Why stay in SK if they like NK so much.

        • Chucky3176

          Where have you been, redwhitedude?

          • redwhitedude

            I’m still around but I’ve been reduced to reading on Koreansentry.

      • tim

        It isn’t obvious that the SK companies would benefit form stopping doing business in China under this scenario. Annexation of the North would be much pain for both the economy and society – unlike mutual integration. Anyway, the North is now more likely to reunify with China (which is unlikely too) than the South at the moment.

        • redwhitedude

          North Koreans loath Chinese. They are pretending to put a show of unity with the Chinese. They will never allow chinese to take over.

          • tim

            I said it’s unlikely. However, both the DPRK elite and commoners look up to China much more than they do to the South. Cultural and economic ties with China are also the strongest at the moment and nonexistent with the South.

  • Alexei

    Germans can be arrested for supporting Naziism. South Koreans can be arrested for defending Kim Jong Un. Harsh laws, perhaps. But the Leftists who advocate “repeal the national security law” are unabashed hypocrites, promoting democracy in the south, but willfully blinding themselves to the suffering of innocent people in the north.

    • Joey

      How does the National Security Act improve the lives of North Koreans in any way? It’s a relic of the past.

      • Alexei

        Maybe it is a relic of the past, maybe isn’t needed. My problem is with the shameless hypocrisy of those most vocally opposed to it. And look at some of the sites banned by the Act: “uriminzokkiri” for instance. The Daily NK had an article quoting excerpts of that website, saying refugees who flee starvation and oppression are “human scum” and “insects who should never have been born”.
        http://www.dailynk.com/english/read.php?cataId=nk00100&num=9336
        This is hate speech, vitriol. And the government of the ROK is right, very right, to ban it.
        And the righteous outrage of the Left is sickening. Ro is arrested for shaking hands with a dictator, and this is so terrible. If the police use tear gas on protesters this, too is terrible. But if a National Assembly member is talking to a 28-year old student, who escaped to South Korea after being beaten nearly to death by the State Security Department, and calls him a “son of a b*tch traitor”, her party is not the least concerned, does not discipline her; in fact her colleague, Choi Jae-Sung, even agrees with her saying defectors “sell garbage-like information to make money.” Honestly, as long as the law is *opposed* by people like Lim Su-kyung, I will support it.

      • Alexei

        Well the same people calling for the law to be repealed, are making life a living hell for 23,500 Korean citizens. If it were up to me, the National security act would be scrapped, and replaced with the National Decency Act. Read Kim Il Sung’s speeches on the subway, tweet “Long live the DPRK”, do whatever you want, but if you insult innocent people who risked their lives to escape dictatorship, you are going to jail for hate speech and libel.

      • redwhitedude

        Not a relic of the past as long as NK exists and it is trying to do whatever it can to undermine SK.

    • nana

      conflating those two ideologies can also get you arrested, fired. tread lightly please

  • Anonton

    Those images are crazy! Imagine what the south korean guards would have though seeing those crazy north korean antics.

    How did he enter north korea though?

  • Miguk

    Why do all of the choices in the poll assume that the guy must be an “idiot” or “well-intentioned”? Maybe he knows exactly what he’s doing and it’s wrong. Why isn’t there a choice for “traitor”? You really try hard to frame these questions in a certain way, don’t you?

    • Busted! My underlying hatred of Kenny G getting in the way of politics again, sorry.

      • Miguk

        Hehehe… exactly! You should have an option like “we need a National Security Law against Kenny G”.

        • Kenny G should be classed under ‘acts that benefit the enemy’.

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