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United Nations Human Rights Council On North Korea


Retired Australian judge Michael Kirby, chairperson of the commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, shows the commission's report during a press conference at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, Monday, Feb. 17, 2014. (FILE)

The United Nations Human Rights Council sent a clear message that North Korea’s leadership must be held to account for its systematic and widespread human rights violations.

The United Nations Human Rights Council sent a clear message on March 28th that North Korea’s leadership must be held to account for its systematic and widespread human rights violations. The United States and the international community stand with the North Korean people.

The resolution adopted was based on the findings and recommendations of the U.N. Commission of Inquiry, whose work was strongly supported by the United States. The Commission of Inquiry on North Korea found that crimes against humanity have been committed for decades under policies established at the highest levels of the North Korean government.

The past and ongoing crimes committed in North Korea include extermination, murder, enslavement, torture, and imprisonment; rape, forced abortion, and other sexual violence; persecution on political, religious, racial and gender grounds; the forcible transfer of populations, enforced disappearances, and knowingly caused prolonged starvation.

The resolution was adopted by 30 votes in favor, six against, and 11 abstentions. The resolution condemned the violations in North Korea in the strongest terms, renewed the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in North Korea and called on the U.N. to establish a field-based structure to continue monitoring and documenting human rights abuses occurring in North Korea.

The United States is committed to working closely with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to support the Special Rapporteur and to set up the field office to continue the work of the Commission of Inquiry.

There must be no let-up in international pressure for justice in North Korea. This Human Rights Council resolution assures that those suffering in North Korea are not forgotten.
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