Press Release — HRF and No Chain Employing Helicopter Drones to Liberate North Korean Minds


Today at the Oslo Freedom Forum, a North Korean defector and survivor of the Yodok concentration camp revealed the existence of an ongoing weekly program that uses helicopter drones to smuggle outside information into North Korea.

Jung Gwang-il, Executive Director and Founder of No Chain, was invited to Oslo to present a talk about his experiences as a prisoner of the North Korean dictatorship. His presentation, available at, disclosed the joint effort of Human Rights Foundation and No Chain that involves multiple helicopter drones penetrating North Korean airspace with informational payloads that includes USB drives and SD cards full of Hollywood films, South Korean soap operas, internet-free access to Wikipedia, music and other educational information.

“For more than 16 months we have labored intensely to innovate the way in which we challenge the ongoing monopoly of information that the Kim regime uses to control and program the minds of the citizens of North Korea. Employing commercial drones is an improvement on using balloons and dangerous smuggling routes from China. We are satisfied that the effort is successful and encourage other civil society organizations to take advantage of new technologies to infiltrate North Korea with information,” said HRF president Thor Halvorssen.

The North Korean dictatorship continues to be one of the most totalitarian regimes on the planet. While other regimes oppress their dissidents and censor the Internet, North Korea has no dissidents and no connection to the outside world. It has no Internet. The Kim family rules with absolute authority and arbitrarily imprisons or executes anyone who stands in their way.

“This method reduces risk. The more USBs sent into North Korea the sooner change will come. The regime threatens the world with nuclear rockets and we human rights defenders answer those threats using information and technology. One USB key or SD card can influence hundreds of North Koreans and liberate them from the imposed ignorance that cripples critical thinking and perpetuates the power of the regime.” said Jung Gwang-il.

Human Rights Foundation (HRF) is a nonpartisan nonprofit organization that promotes and protects human rights globally, with a focus on closed societies.