For the first half of 2016, the number of detections totaled 814, an annual increase of 15 percent. The plethora of defections has followed an increase in tension between North and South Korea following the North’s nuclear testing. The number of defectors used to reach over 2,000 a year, but after Kim Jong-un reached power, the number of defectors was cut in half. It appears to have been due to more difficulty in escaping and increased punishment, rather than better conditions. Park said in her speech that the increase in 2016 has been due to an increase in oppression and widespread hunger.