February 22, 2024

Last year, North Korean workers were banned abroad. But some still didn’t leave.

A year has passed since the U.N. deadline, but North Koreans are thought to be stranded or illegally working overseas

This time last year, North Koreans working abroad were supposed to return home from far-flung construction sites, restaurants and other businesses, where they labored away for small pay but an often-coveted seat abroad.

The U.N. had enacted a ban on DPRK migrant workers in hopes of limiting Pyongyang’s revenue streams, and the deadline to leave was set for Dec. 22, 2019 after a two-year grace period. The ban was just one part of U.N. Security Council Resolution 2397, which was unanimously passed in Dec 2017 after a series of North Korean missile tests.