Home > News > NK Human Rights Issues

 
Date : December 4, 2012
CBS’s ‘60 Minutes’ Features Shin Dong Hyuk
   http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50136263n [733]
Shin Dong Hyuk, noted North Korean human rights activist and only known survivor of the notorious Camp 14, featured as an interviewee on CBS’s ’60 Minutes’ on December 2nd. Anderson Cooper interviewed Shin Dong Hyuk in a feature entitled ‘Three Generations of Punishment.’ The report focused on Mr. Shin’s experiences inside the camp and his life outside.
Mr. Shin was born in Camp 14 in 1982. For the next 23 years of his life all Mr. Shin knew was the inside of the Camp. When asked by the interviewer whether anyone had ever explained why Mr. Shin was in the camp, he answered, “No, never. Because I was born there, I just thought those people who carried guns were born to carry guns and prisoners like me were born as prisoners.”
The focus of some of the feature was, as David Hawk said about the camps and punishment on the show, the “elimination of the lineage.” Mr. Hawk gave a brief outline of the system of familial punishment that is such a feature of the North Korean regime’s control of society. He described it as “unique in the 20th or 21st century.”
Mr. Shin showed the wounds that were inflicted on him to some of the production team at ‘60 Minutes.’ He was then asked how he was tortured. He replied, “They hung me by the ankles and they tortured me with fire. And from the scars that I have, the wounds on my body, I think they couldn’t have done more to me.” This torture preceded the execution of his mother and brother.
Mr. Shin’s brother and mother had made plans to escape. They had been reported to the camp authorities by Mr. Shin. Mr. Shin was then tortured. After being tortured, he was taken to a field that doubled as an execution site. He said, “When I went to the execution site, I thought that I might be killed. I was brought to the very front. That’s where I saw my mother and brother. And that’s when I knew it wasn’t me.” The interviewer then asked how Mr. Shin’s mother was killed. He said that, “They hung her and they shot my brother.”
Mr. Shin outlined the punishment of those that attempted to escape by saying that, “If you escaped, you would be shot. If you tried to escape or planned to escape, you would be shot. Even if you did not report someone who was trying to escape, you would be shot.” After meeting a prisoner that experienced freedom and international travel in the camp, he escaped from the camp in 2005 after he was sent to collect firewood.
The report and other extracts which discuss Mr. Shin’s experiences outside the camp can be viewed on CBS’s website - http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50136263n

Prev  Next