North Korea arrested of Kim Hak-song, the second teacher to be detained from Pyongyang University of Science and Technology (PUST) on May 6th. This university is a foreign funded university for North Korea’s elite. However, “It was founded by and is chiefly funded by evangelical Christians.” Some believe that many of the professors at this university were Christians. This raises questions over the arrest of Kim Hak-song. At a time with heightened tension with the United States, it could be interpreted as “classic asymmetric warfare” as Time magazine proposes. However, given the University’s ties with evangelicals, it could also be a signal to foreign Christians regarding working in North Korea. Already, a foreign pastor is facing life in prison in solitary confinement for his work in North Korea.
5/11/2017 North Korea (Time) – Recent spiraling tensions between the U.S. and North Korea are rooted in Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un’s relentless pursuit of a nuclear deterrent, with hopes of a resolution undermined by the superpower rivalry between Washington and Pyongyang’s sponsors in Beijing. But far from the grand geopolitical strategizing, individuals can sometimes get caught up in the rancor.
As happened again on Saturday, when a fourth U.S. citizen was detained in North Korea on suspicion of “hostile acts,” raising fears that the regime might be gathering political prisoners at a time when Washington is ramping up pressure, following the North’s accelerating nuclear and missile tests.