Fired from job due to handshaking with a foreigner
To prevent North Korean officials from being influenced by unacceptable ideology, the State Security Department [SSD] is strictly cracking down their contacts with foreigners. A source form South Pyongan Province reported, “Recently, a high ranking trade official was fired because he shook his hand with a foreigner. When he was waiting in the lobby of the Taedonggang Hotel to meet another trader, his foreigner acquaintance offered his hand. He automatically shook his hand in response and this was caught.”
A source added that when the party cadre goes on a business trip to abroad, including China, a SSD agent should accompany them. Even for the meetings taking place in North Korea, high ranking officials should submit what is known as an “application for a face-to-face meeting” to the Department of Domestic Conspiracy Research 15 days prior to the occasion. Even though these meetings are approved, they should take place only in a state-approved hotel or in a specified meeting room in the border customs office, and the meeting itself must be finished within a designated amount of time.
What’s worse, the local SSD branch has installed wiretaps in state-approved meeting rooms in the China-North Korea border region customs offices and in the Pyongyang hotels, to make sure that discussions deal with only business matters. Also, SSD agents, who follow the cadre’s business trip to abroad, must submit detailed daily reports on conversations in the meeting.