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North Korean Rocket Launch Bodes Ill for Christians

  • Religion Today
    Religious persecution, missions, Christianity around the world
  • 2012 Dec 13
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North Korea's successful rocket launch is putting an end to some of the mystery surrounding its new leader, Kim Jong Un, with many world leaders saying he is now proving to be just as provocative as his late father, Kim Jong Il. According to CBN News, this may also mean more trouble for North Korean Christians and those trying to reach the closed country with the gospel. "The message to the world is 'Don't mess with me; I not only have the weapons, I have the delivery capability now,'" said Jung Hoon Lee, Yonsei University professor. Many North Koreans publicly celebrated the rocket launch, which the White House called "regrettable" and "highly provocative." Meanwhile, human rights groups say North Korea is increasing its persecution of Christians under Kim Jong Un's leadership, and is targeting those who help them. The country is not only sending a growing number of spies to China and to border patrol locations to search for those who help North Korean refugees, but is increasing scrutiny of underground Christians within North Korea. Open Doors USA estimates about 50,000 to 70,000 Christians are living in horrific conditions in labor camps, some who have been "tortured so severely they cannot walk anymore."