News




DATE=2/26/98
TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
NUMBER=2-227341
TITLE=KOREA DEFECTORS (L-ONLY)
BYLINE=DAVID DYAR
DATELINE=WASHINGTON
CONTENT=
VOICED AT: 

INTRO:  A NORTH KOREAN DEFECTOR SAYS SHE HAS PERSONALLY WITNESSED
BIOLOGICAL WEAPONS EXPERIMENTS BEING CONDUCTED ON NORTH KOREAN 
PRISONERS.  AS V-O-A CORRESPONDENT DAVID DYAR REPORTS FROM 
WASHINGTON, THE DEFECTOR SAYS AT LEAST 50 PEOPLE DIED FROM THE 
EXPERIMENT.

TEXT: THE DEFECTOR, LEE SOON-OK, TOLD A NEWS CONFERENCE IN 
WASHINGTON, SHE WITNESSED THE EXPERIMENT TEN YEARS AGO WHILE SHE 
WAS A PRISONER AT A NORTH KOREAN PENITENTIARY.  SHE SAYS THE 
VICTIMS OF THE EXPERIMENT WERE ALL DISABLED PRISONERS.

                     /// LEE SOON-OK CUT ///

         ABOUT 50 OF THEM WERE PROVIDED WITH CABBAGE FOOD.  IT 
         WAS EXTREMELY UNUSUAL FOR US.  SO WE NOTED THAT, AND WE 
         NOTED THAT RIGHT AFTER EATING THAT CABBAGE FOOD, ALL 50 
         OF THEM PERISHED WITHIN TWO HOURS.  I REMEMBER THAT 
         CLEARLY.  AND LATER I FOUND THAT IT WAS (FOR) BIOLOGICAL
         WEAPONS TESTING BECAUSE I WAS IN CHARGE OF THE 
         ACCOUNTING OF THE CAMP AND I WAS IN COMMUNICATION WITH A
         GUARD AND LATER I REALIZED WHY THE PEOPLE WHO ATE THE 
         CABBAGES DIED.

                         /// END CUT ///

MS. LEE GAVE  NO  FURTHER DETAILS ON THE INCIDENT.  BUT HER CLAIM
OF BIOLOGICAL WEAPONS TESTING IS ONE OF THE FEW FIRST HAND 
ACCOUNTS THAT SUCH EXPERIMENTS HAVE TAKEN PLACE IN THE NORTH 
ASIAN COUNTRY.  THE DEFECTOR ALSO SAID 150 PRISONERS IN HER 
PENITENTIARY DIED DURING A TEST OF CHEMICAL WEAPONS IN 1990.

A U-S DEFENSE DEPARTMENT REPORT RELEASED LAST YEAR ON WEAPONS OF 
MASS DESTRUCTION SAYS NORTH KOREA IS CAPABLE OF PRODUCING LIMITED
QUANTITIES OF BIOLOGICAL WARFARE AGENTS.  IT ALSO SAYS NORTH 
KOREA IS BELIEVED TO HAVE A SIZABLE STOCKPILE OF CHEMICAL 
WEAPONS.  NORTH KOREA HAS SIGNED AN INTERNATIONAL TREATY BANNING 
BIOLOGICAL WEAPONS, BUT HAS  NOT  SIGNED A SIMILAR TREATY ON 
CHEMICAL WEAPONS.

                        /// REST OPT ///

MS. LEE SPENT FIVE YEARS IN PRISON ON WHAT SHE SAID WAS A TRUMPED
CHARGE OF MISAPPROPRIATED GOVERNMENT PROPERTY BEFORE DEFECTING TO
SOUTH KOREA IN 1995.

MS. LEE SPOKE TO REPORTERS WITH ANOTHER DEFECTOR AT A NEWS 
CONFERENCE IN WHICH THEY GAVE GRAPHIC DETAILS OF TORTURE AND 
MISTREATMENT INSIDE NORTH KOREAN PRISONS.  (SIGNED)

NEB/DWD/JO



26-Feb-98 2:26 PM EST (1926 UTC)
NNNN

Source: Voice of America
.