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Date : December 19, 2014
UN GA Adopts Resolution on Human Rights in NK
   http://www.dailynk.com/english/read.php?num=12706&cataId=nk00100 [838]

UN General Assembly Adopts Resolution on Human Rights in NK

The UN’s General Assembly adopted a resolution on human rights in North Korea on December 18th by a vote of 116 to 20 with 53 abstentions.

The non-binding resolution, a joint effort by more than 60 nations, was passed 111-19, with 55 abstentions by the UN’s Third Committee last month, and includes provisions for an ICC referral to hold Pyongyang accountable for committing crimes against humanity.

Based on findings from the Commission of Inquiry [COI] on North Korea, the resolution links the abuses to North Korea’s leadership and calls for its accountability in the matter. Imposing targeted sanctions on those responsible is also among the resolution’s recommendations.

The Security Council is expected to broach the topic of North Korea during its opening session on Monday--the first time human rights conditions in the nation have ever been included in the Council’s formal discussion.

Earlier this month, 10 of the Council’s 15 member countries urged the resolution’s inclusion in the agenda, effectively overcoming strong opposition from Russia and China regarding the proper platforms and mechanisms through which the matter should be handled.

In addition to the 10 member states letter, a group of the some of the most internationally recognized and active human rights groups submitted a joint support statement shortly after, calling for human rights issues to be placed on the Council’s formal agenda.

One of the support statement’s signatories, ICNK, a joint effort of over 40 human rights groups worldwide seeking to protect the human rights of North Koreans and hold Pyongyang accountable for its human rights abuses--and played a vital role in the establishment of the COI--issued a statement today that it “believes that the resolution will pave a new path to the improvement of the people’s rights and put an end to the systematic, widespread and grave violations of human rights in the DPRK.”

Phil Robertson, Deputy Director of the Asia Division at Human Rights Watch and an ICNK member said of the General Assembly vote, “With this resolution, the UN member states and the international community have committed themselves to ensuring justice is delivered for the North Korean people’s past suffering and their rights and dignity protected going forward. Now the ball is now in the UN Security Council’s court.”

Source: Daily NK

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