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Date : November 5, 2012
ICNK Petitioning UN Member States to Set-up a Commission of Inquiry
The ICNK sent petitions bearing the signatures of defectors to foreign ministers and the representative offices of member states at the UN last week, urging for the establishment of a Commission of Inquiry into crimes against humanity in North Korea.
179 defectors added their signature to the petition. Some of the defectors that signed the petition were witnesses to and experienced some of the worst violations of human rights in North Korea.
The letter states some of the experiences of the signees: “We were subjected to forced labor so severe as to constitute slavery in mines, logging enterprises, collective farms and various factories. We were subjected to reduced food rations so extreme that we saw scores of our fellow prisoners die of malnutrition and disease.”
The letter also highlights some of the worst violations of women's rights in North Korea: "Some of us observed repatriated pregnant women subjected to forced abortions or infanticide because the presumed father was Chinese and the babies were only half-Korean.”
The letter outlines previous attempts to start legal proceedings against the regime in North Korea. It then concludes with a strong statement from the defectors of "upon due consideration through a UN-organized examination, the Human Rights Council and General Assembly recognize and stipulate that the North Korean human rights violations that we witnessed and endured constitute crimes against humanity."

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