North Korea: ‘Time to talk human rights’, says UN expert

OHCHR
OHCHR examines the issue of involuntary separation of Korean families from a human rights perspective.

This article is brought to you in association with the United Nations.

A United Nations human rights expert on Tuesday urged North Korea to open a dialogue with him in parallel to the ongoing diplomatic efforts being undertaken on peace and denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula.

“As recently as just several months ago, the world was fearing a prospect of a nuclear war”, said the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) – commonly referred to as North Korea – Tomás Ojea Quintana.

“While still in its infancy, the world is now witnessing a peace process that may bring real results”, he added, commending the governments of the north and south, for their resolve that there will be no more war and that there will be a new era of peace between the two Koreas.

He said, however, that North Korea has so far refused to engage with him, calling on the Government to begin a dialogue “as a concrete sign of their commitment, which will only serve to reinforce the ongoing process”.

Mr. Ojea Quintana’s appeal followed his eight-day visit to Seoul, the capital of South Korea, where he conducted interviews with people who have recently left the DPRK.

The expert said the worsening humanitarian crisis in the North underlined the importance of putting the lives of all North Koreans on the agenda, expressing concern that human rights terminology had failed to appear in any documents following talks between the two Koreas, and the US-DPRK summit in Singapore on 12 June.

He said it was not the first time that human rights concerns had been “seen as an inconvenience at a delicate moment. However, our experience as the UN has shown that there can be no genuine, peaceful and sustainable transition without it.”

The Special Rapporteur said that “while the difficulties that the recent arrivals from the DPRK alluded to were mostly economic and social, they all displayed a fear of expressing any opinion that could be considered as political, or a criticism of the Government or the leader”.

“Although none of them had a first-hand experience of detention, they all cited knowing someone, or some family, who were reportedly sent to political prison camps (kwanliso), and there is widespread fear of being sent to them,” Mr. Ojea Quintana added.

Special Rapporteurs and independent experts are appointed by the Geneva-based UN Human Rights Council to examine and report back on a specific human rights theme or a country situation. The positions are honorary and the experts are not UN staff, nor are they paid for their work.

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

the European Sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

The most unlikely innovators are changing ICT for development – it’s time we took notice

Ukraine’s Poroshenko implicates NATO in his duel with Putin

European Youth Forum on Summit on Jobs and Growth

UN chief expresses ‘full confidence’ in top Somalia official following Government expulsion

Health without borders: How we can Improve International Collaboration in Health Care

The role of public affairs in student NGOs

EU: Centralised economic governance and bank supervision may lead to new crisis

Devastating storms like Hurricane Florence ‘unusual this far north’: UN weather agency

Taliban-led violence during recent Afghan polls leaves record high numbers of civilians dead – UN

Cédric in India

Rohingya emergency one year on: UN says thousands of lives saved, but challenges remain

Beware the fragility of the global economy

A conceptual approach to Violence Against Healthcare in Turkey from SDG’s

India’s future as a world power depends on 4 key relationships

European Youth Forum celebrates 20 years of fighting for youth rights

Quantitative easing: how Mario can tackle low inflation in Eurozone

Can Eurozone stand economic and financial fragmentation?

A shortened EU Summit admits failures, makes risky promises

Nuclear non-proliferation treaty an ‘essential pillar’ of international peace, says UN chief

6 things to know about the General Assembly as UN heads into high level week

Refugee crisis update: EU fails to relocate immigrants from Greece and Italy

UN forum spotlights cities, where struggle for sustainability ‘will be won or lost’

Madrid is banning high-polluting vehicles from the city centre

Restore hope that peace will come to the Middle East, UN negotiator urges Security Council

ILO and EIB join forces for more and better quality employment

European Young Innovators Forum @ European Business Summit 2014: Europe for StartUps, vision 2020

National parks transformed conservation. Now we need to do the same for the ocean

Jean-Claude Juncker and Theresa May at last week’s EU Council. Source: EC Audiovisual Services / Copyright: European Union, 2017 / Photo: Etienne Ansotte

EU leaders open “Phase Two” of Brexit talks and warn Theresa May of tougher times

Facebook wins EU approval for WhatsApp acquisition; just a sign of the times

Drugs cost too much. There is a better way to fund medical innovation

Czech Babis, Austrian Kurz and others threaten Europe with nationalist populism

The Mobile World Congress in Shanghai will take place on 27-29 June 2018

A jingoistic Spanish ‘war’ from the past

China revisited by the former Ambassador of Hungary to China

Who and why want the EU-US trade agreement here and now

EU cracks under the weight of its policy on the Ukraine-Russia nub

Trade, entrepreneurship and the future of ASEAN’s economy

EU Budget 2019 to focus on young people

‘Crimes against humanity,’ ‘war crimes’ and risk of new ethnic violence in DR Congo, warn UN experts

EU agricultural production no more a self-sufficiency anchor

Why cities hold the key to safe, orderly migration

The EU spent €158 billion on vague, open-ended rural projects

Russia and the EU ‘trade’ natural gas supplies and commercial concessions in and out of Ukraine

Earthquake: Monte Dei Paschi Di Siena

Hollande decisively rebuffs Merkel’s and Rehn’s austerity policies

UN chief welcomes formation of unity government in Madagascar

French Prime Minister passes Stability Program and takes his ‘café’ in Brussels this June

There is a way for Eurozone to reach a sustainable growth path

Earth has more trees than it did 35 years ago – but there’s a huge catch

10 Downing street: Another desperate attempt to unite Britain on Brexit

Huawei answers allegations about its selling prices

Yemen: Major UN aid boost for ‘up to 14 million’ as country risks becoming a land of ‘living ghosts’

Sochi not far away from Ukraine

All talk but no action against fraudulent bankers

Car clocking: MEPs call for new legislation to combat odometer fraud

Globalization 4.0 means harnessing the power of the group

Germany and France only care about keeping their borrowing cheap

OECD, UN Environment and World Bank call for a radical shift in financing for a low-carbon, climate-resilient future

Lies and reality about incomes and wealth in the EU

European Youth Capital 2018 : Cascais

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s