For some reason, there are still people who want to go to North Korea. Regardless of the reason, the U.S. government is giving them a sober warning that should make them think twice about any plans.
The U.S. State Department is warning Americans traveling to the land of Kim Jong Un to get their affairs in order before they go, in anticipation that they will not return. At least not alive.
The State Department is telling travelers to write a will and make funeral arrangements with family before traveling to North Korea, due in no small part to the likely retribution they will receive should hostilities between the two countries break out.
Even now, a number of Americans have been mistreated and imprisoned when they visit. Last year, student Otto Warmbier, who was imprisoned for stealing a propaganda poster, was released to his family in the United States in a coma. He died soon after.
Americans can travel to North Korea, if they wish — but it may just be a death wish, the U.S. State Department cautioned.
The State Department last week issued a stark warning to people setting out for the Hermit Kingdom, cautioning that anyone heading to the dangerous dictatorship should prepare for the possibility of not returning.
“The U.S. government is unable to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in North Korea as it does not have diplomatic or consular relations with North Korea,” the State Department published Wednesday on its website.
Those who wish to travel to North Korea must be approved for a special validation, which are handed out on “very limited circumstances.” U.S. travelers given the approval to experience Kim Jong Un’s regime should then prepare for the worst — including drafting a will and making funeral and property arrangements with family and friends.
“Draft a will and designate appropriate insurance beneficiaries and/or power of attorney; discuss a plan with loved ones regarding care/custody of children, pets, property, belongings, non-liquid assets (collections, artwork, etc.), funeral wishes, etc.,” according to the recommendations.
The agency also urged people to have a “contingency plan for emergency situations,” be updated on the State Department’s social media platform and alert systems.
President Trump announced in November the U.S. designation of North Korea as a state sponsor of terrorism, adding the country to a short list including Iran, Sudan and Syria. North Korea had been removed from the list by the Bush administration in 2008.
Trump cited Kim’s “murderous” rogue regime and the death of American college student Otto Warmbier, who was imprisoned in North Korea for more than a year and died days after he returned to the U.S. in a coma, as reasons for the return to the list.