News / Asia

Experts Praise Exposure of Pyongyang's Abuses

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, Feb. 17, 2014.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, Feb. 17, 2014.
x
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, Feb. 17, 2014.
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, Feb. 17, 2014.
Victor Beattie


VOA’s Victor Beattie interviewed two human rights experts familiar with the commission’s investigation and human rights issues in North Korea. Greg Scarlatoiu is Executive Director of the Washington-based Committee for Human Rights in North Korea and Stephen Noerper is Senior Vice President of the New York-based Korea Society.

BEATTIE: Could we call this the first high-level investigative report into allegations of North Korea’s human rights violations?

NOERPER: It is indeed. And that’s what makes this incredibly important. It was the first widespread one. International human rights groups, university professors and international law experts have worked on this for a great deal of time. But this is the first time that it is had this level of international concern. And I think the consensus probably is that this process should be renewed and continued especially considering the depravity of many of the accounts that have been told.

SCARLATOIU: Furthermore, this is an impartial commission. It rigorously investigated a tremendous number of documents and interviewed numerous witnesses. It covers a broad range of violations.  It recognizes that the Kim regimes’ systematic murder, abduction, torture, starvation, religious persecution, and political imprisonment of its people must be brought to an end.

BEATTIE: What impact will this likely have on the international community?

SCARLATOIU:  This is the first time ever that a U.N. body has established that crimes against humanity have been committed. What this means is that fundamentally the price of unconditionally supporting a regime that has certifiably committed crimes against humanity is going to be high. This is going to make it increasingly difficult for P5 members – permanent members of the Security Council – to unconditionally support the North Korean regime, the Kim regime, to maintain that position.

BEATTIE:  You, of course, are referring to China’s past support for North Korea. Would China likely block U.N. action on these findings?

NOERPER: Certainly it would not be in China’s long term interest. The types of atrocities that have been outlined are such that it’s very, very hard to imagine that any regime, be it in Beijing or otherwise, could stand up very long and in any way credibly defend Pyongyang on these sorts of abuses.

You May Like

Mali's Female Basketball Players Rebound After Islamist Occupation

Islamist extremists ruled northern Mali for most of 2012, imposing strict Sharia law, and now some 18 months later, the region is slowly getting back on its feet More

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

Many Chinese-made products go unsold, for now, with numerous Vietnamese consumers still angry over recent dispute More

Koreas Mark 61st Anniversary of War Armistice

Muted observances on both sides of heavily-armed Demilitarized Zone that separates two decades-long enemies More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Students in Business for Themselvesi
X
Mike O'Sullivan
July 26, 2014 11:04 AM
They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid