Kim Jong-Un era starts with new landmines on China border and shoot-to-kill orders to stop defections

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By Lee Jong-Heon,

North Korea has planted land mines and installed wooden planks studded with sharp iron nails along its border with China in one of the strictest measures yet to deter starving citizens from fleeing into China, according to Seoul-based defectors’ groups.

In this picture taken from the Chinese border city of Dandong, a N. Korean soldier walks in Sinuiji on Dec. 21. /Liu Jin/AFP/Getty Images

“North Korea is planting a number of land mines along its side of the border with China to block its people from crossing the border, with the beginning of the Kim Jong-Un era,” said Free North Korea Radio, a group run by North Korean defectors in Seoul.

“North Korea troops were spotted working busily to plant land mines in the border areas,” the group said in a newsletter, citing a source in the North’s northwest border province of Ryanggang. It is unclear whether the mines were designed to injure would-be defectors or trigger a bright light to signal their presence, it said.

Another Seoul-based defectors group, the Daily NK said the North had placed iron nail-studded boards along the border to prevent border jumping and smuggling. “The North’s regime has made an order to border villagers to make 1-meter-long boards with sharp iron nails,” the group said, citing a source inside the North.

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