North Korea Makes Diplomats Deal Drugs: Report

South Korean diplomats allege that trade running in several countries

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Mar 25, 2013 4:07 PM CDT

(Newser) – Is North Korea financing its activities (like, say, its weird propaganda film industry) with drug money? That's what South Korean diplomatic sources tell the Chosun Ilbo . South Korean intelligence has learned that North Korea has sent large quantities of illicit drugs to one of its Eastern European embassies, ordering diplomats there to push the stuff, the sources allege. Diplomats elsewhere allegedly received similar marching orders, with each told to raise $300,000 by April 15 as a sign of loyalty.

The Washington Post for one thinks there's "good reason to suspect" the story is true, noting that North Korea already sells high-quality, state-manufactured meth in China, and that the kind of hard currency the drugs would bring in is vital. It adds that these days, meth is more available in the country than basic medicine, and that many use it as a "cure-all."

North Korean embassy staff members lower their national flag at half-mast to mourn the death of Kim Jong Il on the roof of the embassy in Beijing, China, Dec. 19, 2011.
North Korean embassy staff members lower their national flag at half-mast to mourn the death of Kim Jong Il on the roof of the embassy in Beijing, China, Dec. 19, 2011.   (AP Photo/Andy Wong)
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