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From today’s Kyunghyang Shinmun:

 

A Burned-Down Shantytown near Rich Gangnamgu Area

 

One resident looks for something among the ashes of a burned-down shanty town Gaepo 4 dong, Gangnamgu, Seoul, because of a fire started by a Kim, third-grader at a nearby elementary school.

 

 According to the police, Kim started a fire by a lighter on wooden chopsticks for fun, while riding on a bicycle. But the fire grew bigger when the chopsticks were placed on a styrofoam, which he could not extinguish.

 

 This shanty town is composed of 135 households of the urban poor. Out of these, 85 households were burned because of this boy's playful fire-setting. The 189 residents make their living by collecting recyclable things coming from a rich neighboring high-rise buildings.

 

 While urban redevelopment started in this area in February, the Gangnamgu Office imposed 50 million to 150 million won of compensatory fine per household for their illegal occupation of the land.

 

 The residents, who are urban poor, have lived here for 30 years since they were forcibly moved from other areas in December of 1981. With the compensatory fine imposed, they cannot move to any place. The wish of the residents is just to stay and live where they have been.

 

 The life of the urban poor in the vicinity of a rich Gangnamgu neighborhood is so vulnerable as to be totally demolished by a small boy's play with fire.

 

 

 

 

http://english.khan.co.kr/khan_art_view.html?artid=201106141409457&code=710100

 







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