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Local Professor Claims 9 N. Korean Workers in Russia Defected to S. Korea

Written: 2023-01-25 13:48:01Updated: 2023-01-26 09:29:04

Local Professor Claims 9 N. Korean Workers in Russia Defected to S. Korea

Photo : YONHAP News

A local university professor has claimed that nine North Koreans working in Russia had defected to South Korea last year.

Kang Dong-wan, the head of Dong-A University's Busan Hana Center, which supports North Korean defectors, told KBS on Wednesday that a group of men in their 20s to 50s arrived in the country last month.

He said that they are currently receiving training at a settlement support center run by the unification ministry.

Kang said the laborers, which include soldiers in their 20s and loggers in their 40s and 50s that had worked in Russia for many years, decided to defect to the South following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Radio Free Asia(RFA) earlier reported that North Koreans working in Russia are believed to be seeking an escape over fears that they could be sent to Ukraine's war-stricken eastern region.

The National Intelligence Service(NIS) and the unification ministry in Seoul, meanwhile, have both declined to confirm the reported defections.

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