Sunday, March 30, 2003
Kim Il Jong's bizarre fear of triplets.
ALL triplets in North Korea are being forcibly removed from parents after their birth and dumped in bleak orphanages.
The policy is carried out on the orders of Stalinist dictator Kim Jong-il, who has an irrational belief that a triplet could one day topple his regime.
The number three is thought to be auspicious in North Korea and triplets are revered. It is believed they are likely to rise to positions of power, which accounts for Kim's insistence that they are all raised in state-run orphanages, where their development can be controlled.
Officially, the policy was introduced to help poverty-stricken parents in a country where hunger is widespread.
But aid agencies and diplomats have dismissed this: triplets born to high-ranking officials are also seized.