Via a reader tip come this profile of former detainee in North Korea Robert Park. Not much really new in the article other than the fact that a drug cocktail given to him by the North Koreans may explain his current mental instability:
Unlike before his detention, Park stutters. He prays almost compulsively. He has tried to commit suicide several times. And he hasn’t had a haircut since his release, in part because he now feels uncomfortable whenever strangers touch him.
On Christmas Day 2009, Park, hoping to raise attention to Pyongyang’s human rights abuses, entered North Korea – an act Park’s friends liken to a monk setting himself on fire.
“It was just an incredibly pure act that stemmed from a frustration – the inability to get people to care about the worst humanitarian crisis in the world,” said Suzanne Scholte, a well-known activist who heads the North Korea Freedom Coalition.
Though reluctant to speak in detail about his imprisonment, Park says he was tortured and sexually abused by his captors. He calls his treatment “humiliating” and “worse than death.” Scholte suspects that Park was administered a brain-scrambling cocktail of drugs that has left him paranoid, sometimes angry. On bad days, Park believes his life is in danger. He says North Korean agents will kill him for speaking so harshly about their government. [Washington Post]