Could sharing someone else's content on social media site Twitter get you jail time? Not if you live in the United States. But in democratic South Korea, a 24-year-old faces up to seven years in prison for retweeting content from @uriminzok, the official North Korean Twitter account.
Park Jeong-Geun is a member of South Korea's Socialist Party, an organization which is highly critical of North Korea. He says that he retweeted content from the North Korea government in a sarcastic manner. But while he may have intended to mock North Korea, his own government in South Korea isn't laughing.
South Korea and North Korea have been incredibly antagonistic towards each other since the country was split following World War II. The government of South Korea forbids its citizens from viewing tweets from North Korea — content it considers propaganda. Under South Korean law, the act of praising North Korea is punishable by up to seven years in prison.
Amensty International has stepped in to try and protect Jeong-Geun from prosecution, calling the charges against him "ludicrous."
"This is not a national security case," said Sam Zarifi, Amnesty International's Asia-Pacific director. "It's a sad case of the South Korean authorities' complete failure to understand sarcasm."
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