North Korea

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China Warns US on North Korea's Nukes

Arsenal bigger than US thinks, Beijing's experts say

(Newser) - Even North Korea's closest ally is getting very worried about the country's nuclear arsenal—which may be a lot bigger than we thought. China has warned American nuclear experts that Pyongyang now has around 20 nuclear warheads, and the country has become so good at enriching uranium that... More »

Kim Jong Un Scaled the North's Tallest Peak*

*Here, have some nice pabulum with that propaganda

(Newser) - Today, being the seventh day, presumably Kim Jong Un is resting. But yesterday, the North Korean despot was busily scaling the snowswept 9,000-foot tallest peak in his kingdom, and state media is reporting everything but that he did it in a single bound, reports the BBC . "Climbing Mount... More »

What N. Korean Kids Learn: Kim Jong Un Drove at 3

Kim Jong Un, boy genius, also won yacht races at age 9, per new curriculum

(Newser) - Parents outraged by Common Core can at least be glad their kids aren't being schooled in North Korea. The Telegraph reports that middle school and high school teachers there have been issued a manual to use while teaching a new subject for 2015: "Kim Jong Un's Revolutionary... More »

Look Who's Back: Kim Jong Un's MIA Wife

Ri Sol Ju makes first public showing in months at soccer game with her husband

(Newser) - Someone's been taking that Beatles song "You've Got to Hide Your Love Away" a little too seriously. But four months is a long time even by North Korean dictator standards, which may explain why pictures released by the country's state news agency show Kim Jong Un... More »

To N. Korea With Love: Interview Gets Balloon Drop

Defector is balloon-dropping DVDs from South Korea

(Newser) - There was no red carpet and no lines, but The Interview has apparently made its debut in North Korea. A North Korean defector tells AFP that since January he's balloon-dropped thousands of copies of one of the more infamous flicks in recent memory, with his most recent cross-border launch... More »

Kim Jong Un Resurrects 'Pleasure Squad'

New troupe of female entertainers in training in Pyongyang

(Newser) - Kim Jong Un is reportedly taking after his father and recruiting new talent to what has become known as the "pleasure squad." Kim Jong Il was a well-known fan of the troupe of female entertainers, which Kim disbanded after his father's death. But it appears he has... More »

North Korea's Interview Threat Actually Works

Activists postpone DVD balloon airdrop

(Newser) - Almost five years ago, 46 sailors on a South Korean warship were killed in a torpedo attack that Seoul blamed on North Korea—and if North Korea doesn't officially say it's sorry for that ambush by Thursday (the fifth anniversary), an activist group will eventually fly 500,000... More »

North, South Korea Languages Drifting Apart

After 7 decades, about one-third of words are different

(Newser) - On one side of the line that has divided two societies for so long, the words arrive as fast as globalization can bring them—English-based lingo like "shampoo," ''juice," and "self-service." To South Koreans, they are everyday language. To defectors from North Korea,... More »

Cops: Korea Attacker Intended to Kill Ambassador

Pyongyang fires 7 more missiles

(Newser) - The South Korean man who slashed Mark Lippert so severely that the US ambassador needed 80 stitches in his face is expected to face attempted murder charges. Kim Ki-jong attacked Lippert to protest US-South Korea military drills , and police say that although Kim claims he only wanted to wound the... More »

Knifed US Envoy Leaves Hospital

'I feel pretty darn good, all things considered,' Mark Lippert says

(Newser) - Mark Lippert has escaped his "deserved punishment [representing] warmonger United States" and his "knife shower of justice." The 42-year-old US ambassador to South Korea was discharged today from the Seoul hospital where he's been recuperating after a knife attack last week at the hands of a... More »

N. Korea Diplomat Busted at Airport With $1.4M—in Gold

Son Young Nam may have been smuggling gold for sale in Bangladesh

(Newser) - You and I can't get away with a 5-ounce bottle of shampoo at the airport, but a North Korean diplomat apparently thought the 27 kilograms of gold in his carry-on—worth about $1.4 million—was no big deal. Bangladesh would beg to differ, reports the Wall Street Journal ... More »

N. Korea Hails 'Knife Shower of Justice' on Ambassador

State says attack on Mark Lippert was 'deserved punishment for warmonger US'

(Newser) - North Korea doesn't usually go out of its way to congratulate anyone from South Korea on anything, but today it praised the pro-North activist who allegedly attacked US Ambassador Mark Lippert with a knife yesterday, Yonhap reports. The dispatch from the state's Korean Central News Agency sent out... More »

US Spy Chief Describes Weird North Korea Visit

Banquet was followed by security warning

(Newser) - The North Koreans are generous but perplexing hosts, according to National Intelligence Director James Clapper. According to Reuters , the spy chief says that during his secret mission to Pyongyang last November to bring two Americans home , a general treated him to a "marvelous" 12-course banquet at a restaurant that... More »

Pyongyang Fires Missiles as War Games Begin

US-South exercises draw threats of 'merciless strikes'

(Newser) - The US and South Korea launched their annual joint military exercises early today—and North Korea delivered its annual response of missile launches and dire threats. According to Yonhap News , Pyongyang fired two short-range missiles into the East Sea from the western city of Nampo as the drills began. South... More »

Why a N. Korea Company Renamed 93% of Its Ships

It's a bid to evade UN sanctions

(Newser) - A North Korean shipping company has renamed 13 of its 14 ships, and there's a devious reason why, according to a new UN report. Ocean Maritime Management was last year blacklisted by the UN Security Council following a 2013 discovery of two fighter jets (among other things) hidden under... More »

Pyongyang Bans Foreigners From Marathon

Country worried runners might bring Ebola

(Newser) - Tightening the screws even further on travel to their already isolated country, North Korean authorities have barred foreigners from one of the year's most popular tourist events—the annual Pyongyang marathon —because of ongoing concerns over the spread of the Ebola virus, travel agencies say. While no cases... More »

Report: North Korea Sends 'Slaves' Abroad

State steals wages to combat sanctions, says NK Watch

(Newser) - Though most North Koreans will never leave their isolated country, an estimated 100,000 work long hours abroad to earn hard currency for the state. As sanctions against North Korea continue to take a toll, a program of sending contract workers to build monuments in Africa, fish off Fiji, dig... More »

North Korea Debuts 310 New Slogans

'Let the strong wind of fish farming blow across the country!'

(Newser) - What 1945 brought to North Korea: Japan's rule over the country ended and the governing Worker's Party of Korea came into being. The 70th anniversaries are being honored as only North Korea could: With the release of 310 new exclamation-point-laden slogans touching on everything from fish farming to... More »

Amid Talk of Summit, N. Korea Tests Missiles

As joint US-South Korea military exercises loom

(Newser) - North Korea test-fired five short-range missiles into the sea today in its second such weapons test this year, a South Korean defense official said, amid dimming prospects for the resumption of high-level talks between the rival countries. The missiles, fired from a North Korean coastal town, flew about 125 miles... More »

Report: US Hacked North Korea Years Ago

Meanwhile, unknown hackers have trashed Kim Jong Un video game

(Newser) - The US was able to pin the Sony Pictures cyberattack on North Korea with confidence because the National Security Agency hacked its way into North Korean systems years earlier, according to the New York Times , which cites American and foreign officials as well as computer experts and a newly disclosed... More »

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