A defector-based movement Free North Korea Broadcasting (FreeNK) conducted a telephone survey [of North Korean] defectors over the age of 20 years. The broadcast revealed that 98% of participants in the survey had witnessed public executions.
According to FreeNK, 49% of participants had witnessed public executions 6~10 times, 27% of participants 10~20 times and 6% of participants had witnessed public executions on more than 20 occasions. Taking the results of the survey into consideration, it can be deduced that on the greater part, that the majority of North Korean citizens have witnessed public executions.
Survey respondents revealed that murder and theft was the major crime committed by offenders, particularly during the food crisis in the mid-90’s where theft of daily necessities was most high. FreeNK further revealed responses by participants that “Stealing rice or corn, cross-handling electricity lines and slaughtering of cows served as the greater examples of crime.”
Kim a female defector from Pyongyang revealed “Even if crimes are petty, the government still sentences people to public execution as an example to those who commit crime."
[The Daily NK]