Seoul Could Deport an American Author for Praising North Korea

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A Korean-American author living in South Korea faces deportation after making supposedly pro-Pyongyang comments during a lecture late last year — including a remark about the Hermit Kingdom’s palatable beer.

On Thursday, prosecutors called on the Korea Immigration Service to deport Shin Eun-mi for violating the state’s security laws, according to the Associated Press.

South and North Korea have agreed an armistice but are still technically at war. This means that comments overtly complementary of communist-ruled North Korea are viewed very seriously in the South and can be punished by up to seven years in prison.

Shin reportedly said during a lecture in November that many North Korea defectors had a desire to return home one day and claimed that the rivers in the People’s Democratic Republic were much less polluted than those in South Korea. She also lauded the taste of North Korea’s state-produced lager.

The California resident has made several trips north of the 38th parallel and writes frequently about her experiences visiting North Korea for online news outlets. She published a book about the country that appeared on a government-designated reading list in 2013.


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