The Yalu River one of the two rivers that make up the China-North Korea border. It is also one of the two rivers that comes from Mount Paektu, the mountain on the China-North Korea border, and it empties into Korea Bay. The origin of the name is unknown. Linguists believe yalu either comes from Manchu meaning "between two places" or from Mandarin meaning "duck green".
Since the easiest way to leave North Korea is through the China-North Korea border, many North Korean defectors have crossed this river to escape North Korea. However, it has become more difficult to escape the country since the government has sent more guards, more electric fences, and more traps on its borders.