UN hears evidence of N. Korea abuses

Watchdog seeks European backing for commission of inquiry on rights violations

UN hears evidence of N. Korea abuses
UN special rapporteur on North Korea Marzuki Darusman
by Mike MacLachlan, London, United Kingdom

June 14, 2012

A delegation from an international North Korea watchdog is presenting evidence to the United Nations in Geneva today at the end of a tour of Europe. The International Coalition to Stop Crimes Against Humanity in North Korea (ICNK) began its submission to Marzuki Darusman, the UN special rapporteur on North Korea, and other UN officials yesterday. The delegation began its European visit on June 7, in an effort to persuade European governments and the European Union to support the setting up of a UN commission of inquiry into human rights abuses in North Korea. Delegates met members of the European Parliament and EU officials in Brussels on June 7 and on Monday met British MPs and officials of the UK Foreign Office in London. On Tuesday they met French senators, government officials and representatives of the president’s office in Paris. "How many people have to die in prison camps before the international community acts?” asked Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director of Human Rights Watch, a coalition member. “Policy makers should stand up and demand a full UN commission of inquiry,” he said in a statement of behalf of ICNK. The ICNK, set up in Tokyo last year, is the first worldwide group to campaign for “a global effort to end the dire human rights situation in North Korea,” added David Knaute, head of the Asia desk at the International Federation for Human Rights, which is also an ICNK member. Related reports Coalition aims at rights in North Korea Defectors talk to British MPs Group wants end to 'prison camps'

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