Citizens' Alliance for North Korean Human Rights (NKHR)

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Citizens' Alliance for North Korean Human Rights (NKHR)


Our Work Advocacy & Campaigns

Our Work

  • Advocacy & Campaigns
  • North Korean Youth Programs
  • Public Education
  • Refugee Rescue

Advocacy & Campaigns

    • NKHR Advocacy to Establish COI for DPRK NKHR’s Meeting with UN High Commissioner Results in Historical Statement Last December, NKHR staff Joanna Hosaniak and Eun-young Kim met with Navy Pillay, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, in Geneva. The delegation was accompanied by two political prison camp survivors -- Ms. Hyesook Kim from Camp 18 and Mr. Donghyuk Shin from Camp 14. The mission of the NKHR delegation was to discuss the unchanging situation of North Korean human rights and to appeal the high commissioner’s office to take a more aggressive stance to improve the status quo. It was the first time that a North Korean human rights NGO met with a high commissioner.After a short briefing on the background of North Korean political prison camps, Ms. Kim gave an account of her life in Camp 18, where she was taken without notice at the age of fourteen and imprisoned for 28 years. She lost her mother and brother in the camp and gained a son and a daughter through the so-called “commandment marriage” system, but soon lost her husband in a mine accident. Nearing the end of her story, Ms. Kim tried to keep her voice calm but sometimes could not help her tears. A number of the UN officials shed tears listening to the story as well.Following Ms. Kim, Mr. Shin Dong-hyuk gave his speech. He was born and raised in Camp 14 until he escaped it at the age of 23. Mr. Shin said he was reminded of the camp when he recently visited the Holocaust Museum in Washington D.C. and watched a video of the Allied Forces burying dead bodies as they were surrounded by the smell of rotting corpses. He added that the same scene will be repeated if the UN does not take more aggressive actions to improve human rights in North Korea. He explained the reason he testifies and relives his painful past countless times: He wants to save the lives of people in prison camps who might be still suffering from forced labor, torture, and public execution.The meeting closed with NKHR and Human Rights Watch calling for a stronger voice from the UN to improve North Korean human rights. Feeling frustrated and powerless by the status quo, the delegates pressed for the creation of the Commission of Inquiry. Commissioner Pillay responded that she would continuously raise the issue of North Korean human rights and will seriously contemplate over the solutions to improve them.In addition to High Commissioner Navy Pillay, six other officials from OHCHR were present, including Special Rapporteur Marzuki Darusman. NKHR was also supported by Julie de Rivero of Human Rights Watch, who was instrumental in setting up the meeting.____________________________________________________________________________________  On January 14, a little more than a month after NKHR’s meeting with High Commissioner Pillay, she released the first ever statement on the North Korean human rights situation from her office. In it, the Commissioner said that she had met two survivors of North Korea’s labor camps and found their personal stories “extremely harrowing.” Significantly, she called for an independent commission of inquiry to investigate crimes against humanity inside North Korea. Commissioner Pillay also commented on the urgent need to “clarify the fate of the many South Koreans and Japanese abducted by DPRK over the years.” To read the entire text of Commissioner Pillay's statement, please download the PDF file attached to this article.Selected media coverage:Reuters articleWall Street Journal blog article with quote from Joanna Hosaniak See details
    • International Seminar on Responses to Cr… Citizens' Alliance for North Korean Human Rights (NKHR) collaborated with Salzburg Global Seminar on a conference devoted to North Korean human rights, which took place from June 2 to June 6, 2015 in Salzburg. With the distinguished presence of three members of the UN Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the DPRK, the Conference gathered 40 participants, and covered broad range of issues discussed under the Chatham House Rule.   See details
    • NKHR and APRRN call upon China to immedi… NKHR and APRRN call upon China to immediately stop the forcible repatriation of nine North Korean refugees  1 December 2015  Nine North Korean refugees in China, including an 11-month-old infant, appear to be facing imminent repatriation to North Korea. If repatriated, these nine refugees would face torture and other severe human rights violations. Citizens’ Alliance for North Korean Human Rights (NKHR) and the Asia Pacific Refugee Rights Network (APRRN) call upon China to immediately halt the repatriation of these refugees and permit their safe travel to a third country such as South Korea.  Vietnamese officials arrested the nine refugees on October 22, 2015, in Vietnam, as the group was making their way to the South Korean embassy in Laos. A few days later, the refugees were reportedly transferred to Dongxing, China, near the border with Vietnam. On November 16, Chinese authorities reportedly moved the group to Shenyang, a major transit city in Northeast China, much closer to North Korea. The proximity to the North Korean border raises serious concerns that the nine refugees will be repatriated soon.  If the nine refugees are repatriated to North Korea by China, they face an extreme risk of torture, imprisonment, and possibly even execution. North Korea strictly restricts its citizens from leaving the country and severely punishes those who attempt to escape. The 2014 report of the United Nations Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in North Korea found that refugees forcibly repatriated are commonly subjected to torture, arbitrary detention, summary execution, forced abortions, and other sexual violence.  Given these well-documented human rights violations, China’s forcible repatriation of these nine refugees would violate its international law obligations, including the Convention against Torture and the Convention relating to the Status of Refugees. Less than two weeks ago, on November 17, the UN Committee on Torture raised this very concern with China about its policy of repatriating North Korean refugees despite reports of torture. China routinely repatriates North Korean refugees to China, labeling them “economic migrants”, in an attempt to evade its international law obligations.  Vietnam’s transfer of the nine North Korean refugees to China also violates its obligations under international law, including the Convention against Torture, the Convention relating to the Status of Refugees and its 1967 Protocol.  NKHR and APRRN thus call on China and Vietnam to immediately disclose the fate and whereabouts of the nine North Korean refugees. China must also stop the forcible repatriation of the nine refugees immediately, and permit them to travel safely onwards to a third country such as South Korea.  Note: While APRRN statements are prepared in consultations with APRRN members, they do not necessarily reflect the views of all members.​​  [이 게시물은 최고관리자님에 의해 2015-12-08 15:47:51 bbs_active_news에서 복사 됨] See details