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Hungry N. Korean soldiers committing various crimes: report

2016/08/02 16:30

SEOUL, Aug. 2 (Yonhap) -- An increasing number of starving North Korean soldiers are committing all sorts of crimes and inflicting considerable losses on civilians, the U.S.-based Radio Free Asia (RFA) reported Tuesday, citing sources in the reclusive country.

Desperate soldiers in North Hamgyong Province have been raiding civilian homes to steal money and other goods, according to the RFA report.

An anonymous source told the media outlet a large number of residents in Chongjin are reporting damage caused by soldiers belonging to the 45th division located in the city. Locals argued that marauding soldiers are breaking into homes, farms and factories to steal anything of worth. The North Korean soldiers are often called "bandits," according to the source.

Some other soldiers also steal food and vegetables from farmhouses as a means to supplement their meager food rations, according to the source. He said there have even been cases of soldiers robbing people on the roads and in vehicles.

As criminal activities have increased and become more organized, the central government is starting to pay attention and moving to curb the criminal activities.

Moreover, the residents in the province are being advised by the local chapter of the ruling Workers' Party to avoid making contact with soldiers, according to the RFA.

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