Australian comedian Howard X was detained by the Singapore police at Singapore’s Changi Airport yesterday (June 8) for impersonating North Korea dictator Kim Jong Un. In an interview with Reuters, Howard X said he was questioned over his political views and warned by the Singapore dictatorship not to be present at Sentosa Island and the Shangri-La, where the Donald Trump-Kim Jong Un summit would be held:
“They asked me what my political views were and if I have been involved with protests in other countries. I was told to stay away from Sentosa Island and the Shangri-La, two areas that are designated ‘special event areas’ for the summit. They said, ‘It’s the Trump-Kim summit, you’ve come at a very sensitive time.”
The Singapore Immigration Checkpoint Authority (ICA) yesterday issued a press release confirming the comedian was detained for nearly 2 hours due as “procedures”:
“Lee Howard Ho Wun arrived at Changi Airport at about 3.30am on Friday and was interviewed at about 4.15am. After completing the interview at 5am, he was allowed entry into Singapore at 5.15am. As part of the immigration clearance process, travellers to Singapore may be subject to additional interviews and/or screening. These procedures are conducted at all Singapore checkpoints.”
This is the first time Howard X, who had previously impersonated Kim Jong Un in Korea, US and Hong Kong, is detained over his political belief.
Update: 4 South Korean journalists were arrested yesterday when 2 of them allegedly trespassed into the private property of the North Korea envoy in Joo Chiat Road. According to state media, the 4 are from South Korean broadcaster KBS News and 3 of them are “non-accredited” journalists. The four now face local charges warranting a 3 months’ jail and a fine of S$1,500.
Political harassment is a common abuse practised by the Singapore dictatorship, and the authorities often intimidate by hauling them up for lengthy police interviews.
North Korea dictator Kim Jong Un and US President Donald Trump has earlier agreed to chosen Singapore as the destination for a direct meeting over a deal trading North Korea’s nuclear disarmament with the withdrawal of US troops in South Korea. Depending on the outcome of the June 12 meeting, North Korea and South Korea would officially end the war and international trade sanctions against North Korea would be brought to an end after 65 years.
Singapore was chosen as it is a modern dictatorship, an ideal model admired by both Donald Trump who wants more authoritarian power and Kim Jong Un who wants more economic development.