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What has happened to the rule of law in SK? 
Date : December 24, 2020
“‘The principle of clarity,’ an expression of the principle of a constitutional state, is required for all legislation restricting basic rights. If a criminal cannot know what is prohibited and what is allowed in accordance with the meaning of norms, this will lead to weakened legal stability and predictability and enable arbitrary enforcement by law enforcement authorities.” — Compilation of Judicial Reports 14-1, 1, 8., 2000hun-ga8, Jan. 31, 2002, Constitutional Court The “principle of clarity” mentioned above means that people must be able to clearly understand what is illegal or legal from what is said in laws. As an example of the principle of clarity, the UN Commission of Inquiry (COI) pointed out the ambiguity present in the North Korean Criminal Code. The COI’s report, which was released in February 2014, says that “those who illegally cross the border are regularly considered to have committed ‘treason against the Fatherland by defection’ under article 62 of the Criminal Code. This crime is punishable by a minimum of five years of ‘reform through labor.’ Illegal border crossers are alternatively charged under another of the vaguely defined ‘anti-s…
One year on, nothing has changed in North Korea 
Date : June 13, 2019
Benedict Rogers North Korea June 13, 2019 U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un held their historic summit in Singapore on June 12 last year, the first time the leader of the free world and the leader of the world’s most repressive dictatorship had met face to face. That encounter also took place on the anniversary of a famous speech by another American president addressing a nuclear-armed communist dictatorship — Ronald Reagan’s Berlin Wall speech, 32 years ago on that same date. Ahead of the Singapore summit, I argued that President Trump should follow his predecessor’s example and put human rights clearly on the agenda alongside security. I said that he should paraphrase President Reagan and tell the North Korean dictator: “Mr. Kim, if you seek peace, if you seek prosperity for the Korean Peninsula, if you seek liberalization: Come to the prison camps! Mr. Kim, open the gates to the gulags! Mr. Kim, tear down the walls of the gulags! Mr. Kim, free all your political prisoners.” ...... [Source: UCA News.Com]
NK needs mass labor. A growing market economy threatens that 
Date : February 19, 2019
North Korea's 'socialist utopia' needs mass labor. A growing market economy threatens that SEOUL (Reuters) - In January, thousands of North Korean students traveled to Mount Paektu, a sacred mountain where the ruling family claims its roots and where leader Kim Jong Un is building a massive economic hub at the alpine town of Samjiyon. It is one of the largest construction initiatives Kim has launched, part of his campaign for a "self-reliant economy" even as he seeks to convince U.S. President Donald Trump to lift economic sanctions at their second summit later this month. State media painted an inspiring picture of patriotic students braving harsh weather, eating frozen rice, and ignoring supervisors' worries about their health in order to work harder on the huge building site.
HRW urges pressure on NK human rights, criticizes ‘one-dimensional approach’ 
Date : December 17, 2018
On November 1, Human Rights Watch (HRW),an international organization tracking human rights violations in over 90 countries, hosted a press conference at the Korea Press Center in Seoul to discuss its highly critical report on sexual violence against women in North Korea. The report, the most extensive assessment of sexual violence in North Korea published to date, was presented by Kenneth Roth, HRW’s executive director, and North Korean defector Lee So Yeon, director of the New Korea Women’s Union. The 86-page report entitled, “You Cry at Night, But Don’t Know Why: Sexual violence against Women in North Korea”, paints a dismal picture of life inside the hermit kingdom for women of all demographics. The report documents the personal accounts of 54 North Koreans and 8 former North Korean officials who fled the country some time after the current ruler Kim Jong Un came to power in 2011. According to the report, the diversity in age, geographic location, social class and personal backgrounds of the survivors suggests that sexual violence has become a growing epidemic across the entire country. Defectors that were interviewed asserted that unwanted sexual contact and viole…
NK Human Rights, 4 Years After the UN Inquiry 
Date : February 6, 2018
North Korea Human Rights, 4 Years After the UN Inquiry By Benedict Rogers To most people, North Korea is a mystery. Nuclear weapons, seemingly mad dictators with crazy hairstyles, soldiers marching lock-step, and brainwashed citizens applauding in an automated way — these are the popular images. A new report released today – Movies, Markets and Mass Surveillance: Human Rights in North Korea After a Decade of Change – suggests that the situation in what has become known as the Hermit Kingdom is more complex than that. President Donald Trump’s decision to invite an extraordinary North Korean escapee to his 2018 State of the Union address and to meet with North Koreans privately is very welcome. If the United States puts human rights in North Korea at the top of its agenda, it could make a significant difference. The West should have been doing this already, but better late than never. Failure to do so has allowed fellow travelers to imply amoral equivalence between the United States and North Korea as they have played poker with nuclear weapons. How quickly we forget what helped to pull away the bottom layer of bricks in the Soviet edifice. Just over te…
NK delegation struggles to deny accusations of forced child labor 
Date : November 10, 2017
North Korean delegation struggles to deny accusations of forced child labor By Kim Ga Young | 2017-10-18 11:03 With the international community focusing on widespread reports of human rights violations taking place in North Korea, the North Korean regime is struggling to defend itself. Recently, North Korea attempted to challenge the international community’s criticisms of violations of children's rights, but instead ended up acknowledging the serious extent of the problem. The events unfolded on September 20 at a review meeting of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) in Geneva, Switzerland. For further insights into this issue, we spoke to ICNK’s (International Coalition to Stop Crimes Against Humanity in North Korea) Eun Kyoung Kwon (pictured left), who was part of a delegation that attended the event. Daily NK (DNK): What was the aim of the review meeting of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) held last month? Kwon Eun Kyoung (Kwon): The review meeting was scheduled to discuss children’s rights in North Korea. Through subsidiary agencies, the UN regularly holds meetings to check whether member nations are following various agreem…
China Should Stop Repatriating N. Korean Defectors 
Date : October 20, 2017
The world is requiring the Chinese government to stop repatriating North Korean defectors. In order to acknowledge the gravity of seriousness, experts emphasized publicizing China's repatriation policy on North Korean defectors. Daily NK, an online newspaper focusing on issues relating to North Korea, interviewed North Korean experts. “With UN Resolution on the Situation of Human Rights in the DPRK and proclamations, the United Nations and international NGOs should raise the global awareness of China’s repatriating North Korean defectors. Once it is publicized internationally, the Chinese government would be more careful in sending them. Eventually, they will tolerate those who escaped from North Korea,” Eun Kyoung Kwon, a secretary general of ICNK said. Meanwhile, other experts on North Korea and China also pointed out that in order to globally publicize the China’s repatriating problems, the South Korean government must step out and show off its diplomatic influence. Kwon believes that the South Korean government is responsible for expressing our uncomfortable feelings toward China’s repatriating. “They must keep conducting negotiations under the table. In oth…
School is the Center of Violation of Children’s Rights 
Date : October 17, 2017
There was the review of UN CRC (Committee on the Rights of the Child) on the situation of child rights in North Korea in Geneva, Switzerland. This week, I would also like to introduce the fundamental cause of violation of the child rights done by schools in North Korea. Of course, today’s talk contains the questions the members of the CRC in Geneva have asked the North Korean representatives. The content of the discussion is to be released in the form of a report in the early October. The report is expected to contain the suggestions that North Korean government need to practice until the next conference in 2022. I hope you carefully see if the North Korean government practices the suggestions. Whenever I ask the children and parents refugees from North Korea what their hardest experience was, the majority of them say “schools forcing them economic assignments and all the forms of labor mobilization.” According to my research report that was to cooperate with the reviews on North Korea by UN CRC, the children in North Korea were bothered with labor mobilization for 12 months a year. Especially, they were forced to sleep and work together in the village near the regional …
North Korea: Crimes Against Humanity Demand Justice 
Date : March 14, 2017
(Seoul, March 7, 2017) – The International Coalition to Stop Crimes against Humanity in North Korea (ICNK) today announced its support for two new United Nations reports calling for the international community to hold the North Korean government accountable for crimes against humanity. The group of independent experts on accountability, appointed by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights at the request of the Human Rights Council last year with a specific mandate to explore approaches to accountability, asserted that “investigation and prosecution of serious crimes is critical.” The group called for “measures to ensure the right of victims to reparations, the right of victims and society to know the truth about violations, and guarantees of non-recurrence of violations.” “The North Korean government and its leaders should face justice for their crimes against humanity, which continue to this day,” said Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “We urge the UN Human Rights Council to respond positively to the special rapporteur’s call that the recommendations of the group of independent experts be implemented without delay.” The independe…
N. Korea’s child slavery problem is even worse than imagined 
Date : February 10, 2017
They work long hours, don’t get paid and have little say over what they do. Stuck in slave-like conditions, many never get the chance to escape their situation. But this is the reality for many North Koreans who are forced to work in a shocking and inhumane environment. These people are literally servants to the country’s leader, Kim Jong Un — and to make it worse, many are not even adults. Human Rights Watch has highlighted the brutal and barbaric lives youngsters face in the secretive country, with many, especially poor children, having little option of escape. Detailing the plight of two teens who escaped from North Korea and using research and analysis from several sources, HRW said children were being exploited through forced labor and discrimination. One teen was recruited into forced labor every day due to her family’s inability to pay for schooling, while another became an unpaid worker in a home after her family was unable to support her. The teens, who will present their accounts to the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child this week, are just the tip of the iceberg, HRW claims. HRW has called on the UN to pressure the North …
UN: North Korea Exploiting Children 
Date : February 9, 2017
Forced Labor and Discrimination Will Top Child Rights Committee Briefing (Geneva, February 8, 2017) – The United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child should press the North Korean government to end the exploitation of children through forced labor and discrimination, Human Rights Watch and three Korean nongovernmental organizations said today. During the week of February 6, 2017, Human Rights Watch, the International Coalition toStop Crimes Against Humanity in North Korea (ICNK), the New Korea Women’s Union, and the Caleb Mission will brief the pre-sessional working group of the committee in Geneva about the situation of children’s rights in North Korea. Although the North Korean government claims to have abolished child labor 70 years ago, the ruling Workers’ Party of Korea and other government agencies still require students and other children to take part in forced labor on behalf of the state.Other human rights violations include government discrimination regarding access to education, abuses against children with mothers in third countries, corporal punishment at schools, and children compelled to work extended hours without pay in paramilitary forced la…
Louis Cole's Merry North Korea adventure by Phil Robertson 
Date : September 21, 2016
Louis Cole's Merry North Korea adventure By Phil Robertson North Korea is one of the most repressive countries in the world. But that didn't faze the British YouTube celebrity Louis Cole, a 33-year-old travel blogger with nearly two million subscribers, from jumping onto a guided government tour to try and find some new material to promote himself and his FunforLouis video channel. Evidently Cole thought his motto of "peace out, enjoy life and live the adventure," combined with the outlandish goal to promote surfing for North Koreans, would be so much adventure that no one noticed he was completely ignoring the dire reality of life for most persons living under a government whose egregious human rights abuses have been described by the U.N. as "without parallel in the contemporary world." Maybe Cole didn't do his homework, but he seemed genuinely surprised when he came under fire from other Internet video loggers for uploading videos from his 10-day trip in the North Korean government-controlled bubble. He shouldn't have been. ...................
Date : November 30, 2015
The Korean citizen Kim Young Hwan has been helping North Koreans to learn the notion of democracy and human rights, using China as a base of operation, so that together they can gain the capacity to build up a civil society in North Korea. His story reads like a espionage thriller – a tale of two Koreas, changed allegiances, torture and fear. Once Upon a time, Kim Young Hwan was one of South Korea’s best-known student activists. During this time, in the wild 80’s, he was tortured by his own government for supporting its archenemy, North Korea- This is the same Government who protects him today. Back in the 80s, North Korea considered Mr. Kim as such an asset that it smuggled him out of South Korea for a meeting with the North`s founder. Soon after his meeting he had a change of heart and renounced the Communist police state. Since then he has been working tireless to help North Koreans to build an underground pro-democracy movement, using the border between the North and its ally China as his base of operations. [Srouce: Globalo.com]
An Interview with HRNK Report Author David Hawk 
Date : October 14, 2015
HRNK Hidden Gulag series report author David Hawk discussing North Korea’s prison camps with HRNK. On August 24, 2015, HRNK Director of Programs Rosa Park and Outreach Coordinator Raymond Ha traveled to David Hawk’s home in New Jersey to interview the author on his upcoming report for HRNK, The Hidden Gulag IV: Gender Repression and Prisoner Disappearances. This report, along with North Korea: Imagery Analysis of Camp 15 “Yodŏk” –Closure of the “Revolutionizing Zone” by AllSource Analysis and HRNK, was launched on September 18, 2015 at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. David answered on the following questions. See details via HRNK insider. - How did the first Hidden Gulag come about? - You are now on the fourth edition of The Hidden Gulag. What got you interested in the topic of North Korean political prison camps? - How has The Hidden Gulag research methodology changed over the years? - What is the most interesting thing you found while interviewing three women from kyo-hwa-so prison? - Why should we, as the American public, care about these political prison camps halfway around the world? Why should we keep track of ongoing changes? - Why should th…
A list of 180 Prisoners in Yoduk Released 
Date : June 27, 2015
ICNK Seoul member organizations held a press conference on 26th in Seoul Press Center, in which a report regarding the prisoners of Yoduk Concentration Camp was released. The report, titled “My Fellow Inmates: The 180 People Who Disappeared with Seorimcheon, Yoduk”, contains the names, age, and reasons of imprisonment of the 181 prisoners, who were imprisoned in the camp from 2000 to 2003. The list is based on the memories of a North Korean defector, Jung Gang-il, who used to be a prisoner in Camp No. 15, Yoduk from 2000 to 2003. The ICNK Secretariat submitted this report to the UN Human Rights Office in Seoul, which opened on 23th. [Source: Chosun Ilbo]
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