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`1 in 8 pro-NK sites operated by elementary students`

Posted October. 31, 2011 02:02,   


One in eight pro-North Korea websites caught by police over the past three years was operated by an elementary school student. The students gathered materials lauding the North Korea to attract Web users.

A police analysis of people caught for lauding or promoting the North since 2009 found that 37 websites were operated by elementary and middle school students, or 13.2 percent of the 281 pro-North sites that were caught and forced to close.

The elementary students used writings and photos gracing North Korean leader Kim Jong Il from North Korean media, including North Korea`s official daily of Rodong Sinmun, and posted them on their mini homepages and blogs.

The contents of the postings included photos of North Korea founder Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il, lyrics of the North Korean national anthem, and the declaration of the Workers` Party.

Students are found to have posted such contents because "they expected such writings to increase traffic to their websites," "contents were strange and interesting," or "they wanted to make the site look good." Police issued warning to the parents of the students caught and shut down their sites.

A police source said, "Some students filled their websites with pro-North Korea materials while learning how to open and link homepages in school computer class," adding, "Young students were thinking that if they post pro-North Korea write-ups, their sites would draw attention from other people."

Some blame teachers belonging to left-leaning organizations, including the Korea Teachers and Education Workers` Union, of distributing inaccurate information on North Korea at schools, and thus giving ill-advised ideas about the North to students.

Among the 360 violators of the National Security Law caught by police over the past three years, 31 were teachers, making them the second most frequent offenders of the law among occupational groups after civic activists (138). All of the teachers belonged to the progressive teachers` union.