Corruption within the ranks of the army of the isolated communist country is rising while the country faces tough U.N. Security Council-imposed sanctions for violating resolutions against conducting nuclear and missile tests, says a report by South Korea's Institute for National Security Strategy.
The Institute's Koh Jae-hong, who released the report, said highly classified data such as orders of the supreme command, wartime plans and guidelines for electronic warfare "are sold for between tens and hundreds of millions of won" to information traders at the Chinese border region, The Chosun Ilbo reported Friday.
The newspaper quoted the think tank as saying North Korean border guards can be bribed to stand watch for people crossing into China and will even carry elderly defectors on their backs for a fee of about $60.
"In Hoeryong, North Hamgyong Province, a senior security official took a bribe to erase CCTV footage of someone fleeing the North," Koh said.
The report said higher-ranking officers share the bribes in return for giving soldiers border-area postings or furloughs.
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