From Human Rights Watch
The summits between the North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and the United States and South Korean presidents, and increased international re-engagement, have failed to address human rights concerns about North Korea, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2019. North Korea remains one of the world’s most repressive countries.
North Korea violates people’s rights in systematic ways. The government fails to protect or promote the rights of numerous at-risk groups, including women, children, and people with disabilities. The government uses forced labor from ordinary citizens, including children, to control its people and sustain its economy.
“As the world meets and greets the North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, no one should forget they are dealing with a government that extracts fearful obedience based on torture, executions, sexual violence, forced labor, and gulag death camps,” said Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “Since the voices of the North Korean people are silenced, it falls to the world community to make sure demands to protect human rights are placed at the center of all international dealings with Pyongyang.”
In the 674-page World Report 2019, its 29th edition, Human Rights Watch reviewed human rights practices in more than 100 countries. In his introductory essay, Executive Director Kenneth Roth says that the populists spreading hatred and intolerance in many countries are spawning a resistance. New alliances of rights-respecting governments, often prompted and joined by civic groups and the public, are raising the cost of autocratic excess. Their successes illustrate the possibility of defending human rights – indeed, the responsibility to do so – even in darker times.
Read full report here.