[Briefing]37th Monthly Briefing and Discussion on North Korean Human Rights

6 Mar 2017
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On February 28th, NKDB held its 37th Monthly Briefing and Discussion on North Korean Human Rights where a presentation was given on the use of torture in North Korean and types of assistance offered to North Korean torture victims by NKDB.

The presentation described the categorization of torture as well as the overall situation in North Korea. NKDB’s database indicated that more women are subjected to torture than men. It was also emphasized that the North Korean law illegalizing torture has not been effective in punishing perpetrators. Furthermore, both physical and psychological effects prevent the defectors from successfully settling in South Korea, as a result it is necessary to support the victims of torture through consistent counseling as well as physical treatment, an activity which is currently being undertaken by the NKDB counseling team.

The presentation was followed by a question and answer session with Minju Kim, a counselor for the victims of torture at NKDB. Questions touched upon various topics relating to torture in North Korea. The perception that there are more victims of torture in China rather than in North Korea, exposure to outside information increasing likelihood of punishment, prevalence of sexual harassment, the distinction between illegal arrest and illegal detention, the way to document cases of death by torture were among the discussed topics.

Participants included representatives from the Delegation of the European Union, Norwegian Embassy, Embassy of Finland, Wall Street Journal, Human Rights Watch, National Democratic Institute, Embassy of Hungary, Embassy of Canada, UNHR Office, Embassy of Poland, Embassy of Singapore and Embassy of France to the Republic of Korea, NKDB would like to especially thank the National Human Rights Commission of the Republic of Korea for kindly hosting this month’s briefing.