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N Korea at crossroads

Stranded North Koreans in China keep earning for homeland

Tens of thousands of workers unable to return home due to border closure

Vendors at this fish market in Dandong, China, say that none of the seafood comes from North Korea. (Photo by Shin Watanabe)

DANDONG, China -- Many North Korean restaurants operating here, on the Chinese side of the Yalu River, continue to employ workers from their home country despite United Nations sanctions banning such a practice. 

"I don't know when I can return to my country, so I will continue working here," said one North Korean waitress, referring to a travel ban put in place due to the coronavirus pandemic. She added that many North Koreans also work in Shenyang and other Chinese cities. 

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