North Korea wants the world to believe that orphans are volunteering to work in state-owned mines and farms.
The Korean Central News Agency said hundreds of children “with wisdom and courage in the prime of their youth” have chosen to work for the state,” the BBC reported.
The state-run propaganda machine said “dozens of orphan children rushed out to the Chonnae Area Coal-mining Complex to fulfill their oath to repay even just a millionth of the love the party showed” on Thursday.
And on Saturday it said 700 orphans had volunteered to work at factories, farms and forests.
Photos released with the statements suggest the kids are teenagers but they may be even younger.
The dictatorship — often called the “Hermit Kingdom” because of its limited relationships with the rest of the world — has long been accused of using child slaves to work in state-owned industries. Human Rights Watch and other organizations have detailed long hours, little or