Around 70% of North Korean defectors are women, and many of them are targeted to be sold as brides or trafficked in China. Following is a firsthand account from high-profile North Korean defector Yeon Mi Park, who fled North Korea when she was 13 years old, finally arriving in South Korea two years later (2009):
“I found a note that my sister left, saying that, ‘Go find this person, and she will help you to go to China.'”
“My mother and I found the person, a lady [who told us] that she had a few daughters but she sent them all to China, and [claimed] she could help us to go to China. And we did not know that she was a broker, or anything, just we thought, “This stranger wants to help us,” and that’s how we just followed her lead.
“We escaped at night, the very same day. I went to China, and I was sold and trafficked and enslaved for two years there.
“[After finally escaping this terrible situation in China] my mother and myself crossed the Gobi Desert, in minus 40 degrees, at night to Mongolia. When I was crossing the Gobi Desert, I was 15 by then. I think I wasn’t scared of dying in that desert. I thought, “Even this universe abandoned me.” Like, I was punished [simply because] I was born in North Korea. Read more