People Who Travel To North Korea Should Prepare To Die, State Dept Warns


Daily Caller News Foundation logo
Ryan Pickrell China/Asia Pacific Reporter
Font Size:

The Department of State is warning travelers destined for North Korea to draft a will and make funeral plans.

Those who dare to travel to the North should apparently assume that they will not be coming back, the State Department suggested in a stark warning to travelers. The warning, issued last week, was first noticed by NK News.

A travel ban that went into effect last year prohibits American citizens from traveling to North Korea, but there are “very limited circumstances” in which a person can obtain permission to travel to the Hermit Kingdom. The U.S. government makes it clear, though, that “it is unable to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in North Korea.”

The State Department offers several dark recommendations for travelers.

“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.,” the government warning explains.

The State Department “urges U.S. citizens not to go to North Korea/the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) due to the serious risk of arrest and long-term detention,” adding that authorities are known to “impose unduly harsh sentences–including for actions that in the United States would not be considered crimes.”

The North has threatened “U.S. citizens with being treated in accordance with the ‘wartime law’ of the DPRK.”

Otto Warmbier, a University of Virginia student who traveled to North Korea two years ago, was detained for anti-state activities, allegedly attempting to pilfer a propaganda poster from his hotel. After a year in detention, he was returned home in a reportedly comatose state. The young man died one week later, with his parents asserting that the regime tortured and brutalized their son during his time in North Korea.

Citing the “murderous” North Korean regime’s treatment of Warmbier, as well as a laundry list of other crimes, President Donald Trump designated North Korea a state sponsor of terrorism.

The rogue state is still holding three other American hostage.


Follow Ryan on Twitter

Freedom of Speech Isn’t Free
The Daily Caller News Foundation is working hard to balance out the biased American media. For as little as $3, you can help us. Make a one-time donation to support the quality, independent journalism of TheDCNF. We’re not dependent on commercial or political support and we do not accept any government funding.

All content created by the Daily Caller News Foundation, an independent and nonpartisan newswire service, is available without charge to any legitimate news publisher that can provide a large audience. All republished articles must include our logo, our reporter’s byline and their DCNF affiliation. For any questions about our guidelines or partnering with us, please contact