Media reports in South Korea had suggested that the camp, officially known as Penal Labour Colony 22, had been abandoned and the inmates dispersed to other prisons.

Imagery collected by the Washington-based Committee for Human Rights in North Korea as recently as October 11 indicates the camp continues to function, it said in a report.

“Harvesting of crops continues, as does coal production, making it not yet clear that the camp has closed and that North Korean authorities have been slowly transferring small sections of prisoners out of Camp 22 and replacing them with a regular workforce from other locations,” the group said in a statement.