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Date : December 13, 2022
NK forces youth to join grueling pilgrimage to sacred Paektu mountain
   https://www.rfa.org/english/news/korea/paektu-12062022182028.html [130]
North Korea forces youth to join grueling pilgrimage to sacred Paektu mountain

In years past, North Korea would reward particularly patriotic youth by inviting them to join a grueling pilgrimage up Mt. Paektu, the tallest mountain on the Korean Peninsula and a sacred peak in the lore about the ruling Kim family. 

It was considered an honor to climb to near the top of the mountain, which borders China and offers a stunning vista of a piercing blue lake below. 

But these days, young people don’t want to go on this arduous journey, which is traditionally made not only in the summer, but also in the winter, when temperatures on the 9,003-foot (2,744-meter) mountain drop to minus 30 degrees Celsius (-22 degrees Fahrenheit), sources in the country tell Radio Free Asia. 

Plus, since 2019 young people selected for the honor need to cover the cost for supplies and equipment, which comes to around $50 a person – a huge sum for most North Koreans.  ......

[Source: RFA]

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