China: September 16, 2003


After many reports of increased army presence on the North Korean border, the Chinese government admitted that the army had taken over responsibility for security along the border. Thousands of troops have been seen moving towards the border recently. There are military exercises near the border once or twice a year, but this time the soldiers could be seen patrolling along the Yalu river and checking ID papers of people near the border. There is an increasing crime problem along the border. In the past, the criminals were poor North Koreans who had risked their lives to get out of North Korea, but were now destitute and desperate in northern China. But in the last year, there have been incidents of North Korean border guards coming into China, using their weapons to commit armed robberies, and then returning to North Korea. 



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