Yeonmi Park’s Escape from North Korea

Yeonmi Park was born in North Korea. She and her mother, father and sister were a close knit family. Her father did everything he could to take care of his family. He was imprisoned for black market trading. This caused them to be labeled as criminals and pushed to the edge of society. Yeonmi and her family suffered from hunger and deprivation during their time in North Korea. When she was 13, weighing only 60 pounds. Yeonmi admitted on the Reason interview that she and her mother were smuggled to China.
In China, they were sold into the sex trade. After two years in China, they escaped into Seoul, South Korea where they found freedom. By this time, Yeonmi’s father had passed away. Her sister’s whereabouts were never known. In her early 20’s and attending a university, Yeonmi is releasing a book about her life titled, “In Order to Live: A North Korean Girls Journey to Freedom.”

The book describes the many things she and her family had to endure during their time under the brutal regime in North Korea. She says that the same treatment is being forced on people in the country still today. According to a News.AU report, the North Korean government (See, for additional info.) has tried desperately to undermine her credibility, along with that of other defectors from the region. She has shown extreme resilience in telling the world what it is truly like for many in North Korea. She has become very well-known on YouTube for a speech she made last year at the One Young World Summit in Dublin. Her story brought the audience to tears and to their feet in support of her.

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