Australia closes doors to N Korean refugees

About 70 who have fled are finding Australia’s citizenship rules mean they will be deported to South Korea.

Song Dong Park has already seen her son sent to a pre-deportation centre, what she believes is the first step on the road back to North Korea, and she doesn’t want herself or her husband to be next.

Song is one of around 70 North Koreans who have fled their troubled country for Australia, where they’ve found that the country’s restrictions – that no one with dual citizenship may apply for an Australian passport – means they might soon be forced to leave.

Since South Korea considers all North Koreans citizens of its own country, conceiving of a future unified Korean peninsula, Australia does as well.

But Song says moving to South Korea risks falling into the arms of North Korean agents who will find ways to force or smuggle them back.

“We should kill ourselves. No one here cares about us or accepts us,” she says.

Al Jazeera’s Andrew Thomas reports from Sydney.

Source: Al Jazeera

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