North Korea: South Korean missionary sentenced to life in hard labor

Source:            www.MNNonline.org

Date:               June 27, 2014

 

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Russian Orthodox Church in Pyongyang, North Korea. Wikimedia commons: http://goo.gl/hr6lO2

Russian Orthodox Church in Pyongyang, North Korea. (Wikimedia commons: http://goo.gl/hr6lO2)

North Korea (MNN) — South Korea is asking for the release of a Baptist Missionary.

According to CBN news, Kim Jung Wook of South Korea received a life sentence to a hard labor camp.

He was accused and charged with trying to set up underground churches and committing acts that undermined the regime. They claimed he was spying for South Korea when he entered the country last October.

Christian Post says that Kim was captured when he tried to enter the country to find out about food shortage and 12 North Korean women he had previously helped escape the country.

Recently, Kim “admitted” to committing religious acts and “malignantly hurting the dignity” of the government.

South Korea says that Kim is not working as a spy for them and that his punishment is too harsh.

According to The New York Times, North Korea has ignored South Korea’s demands to release Kim.

His lawyers called for leniency because of his confession, reducing his sentence from execution to life in the labor camp.

This is the strongest sentence given to Christian missionaries in recent years, and some sources say it is in line with North Korea’s attempts to step up their guard against outside harmful influences.

While North Korea claims religious freedom, missionary work and Bible distribution is punishable by banishment, labor camp, and execution.

Meanwhile, American Christian Kenneth Bae is serving his 15-year labor camp sentence. Christian Post says he is the longest-serving American detainee since 1953.

Please pray that these Christians may be granted peace, but above all, pray that they will stay strong in their convictions and be a light for Christ in the dark world around them.

More stories about North Korea here.

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