A North Korean woman who fled the tyrannical regime has described the unthinkable horrors she witnessed as a prison guard.
As a 20-year-old Lim Hye-jin was forced to watch two brothers who escaped the concentration camp get beheaded after they were caught — as a savage warning to other inmates, The Sun reports.
Lim, who was just 20 at the time, told the Mail on Sunday: “The other prisoners then had to throw stones at them.”
She could not eat for days after witnessing the nightmarish scene.
At 17 the defector was sent to guard Camp 12, a farm for North Korean dissidents close to the Chinese border.
She said guards were stripped of any feelings of humanity towards the starving prisoners, who included officials who fell foul of dictator Kim Jong-un.
She said: “Even if a guard was driving and ran over a child, there would not be real punishment.”
Political prisoners were casually killed, tortured and raped by their sadistic captors. She told of how one woman was stripped and burned alive after annoying a guard.
She added: “They do not see them as human beings, just as animals.”
Sadly, tales like her are not uncommon in the Stalinist regime. Similar harrowing accounts have emerged from those who have escaped from other prisons, such as Camp 15.
Starving inmates would catch and eat snakes or rats, or even pig feed, an inmate told Amnesty International, adding she once ate corn kernels she spotted in cow dung.
Those caught escaping are hung or shot in front of the other inmates, though in some instances they are beaten to death.
Reports have emerged of women being raped by guards before being “disappeared”, while others are beaten to death with hammer blows for minor infractions.
The reports emerge as tensions remain high on the Korean peninsula as Japan sent its biggest warship since WWII to protect a US supply ship in the area on Saturday.
Also on Saturday US President Donald Trump refused once again to rule out the use of military force against North Korea.