Mobile phones help weaken North Korean isolation

Every week, Mrs Ri, a North Korean defector now living in Seoul, receives a call from her family back home. For her it is a chance to catch up with loved ones. For them, it is potentially a matter of life and death.To make the calls, Mrs Ri’s relatives must run an elaborate gauntlet to call abroad on a Chinese mobile phone, smuggled in over the border. Fearing they could be shot if it is found in their home, they wrap the device in a plastic bag and bury it on a dusty hillside, digging it out to speak only at pre-arranged times.To read this Financial Times report in full, see:

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