Since 2012, People for Succesful COrean REunification (PSCORE) has collected 150 testimonies from North Korean refugees living in South Korea.
Women once detained in North Korean prison camps wrote thirteen of the testimonies.
The testimonies, which describe events that occurred at four separate detention facilities between 1994 and 2009, show a pattern of infanticide, forced abortions, beatings, killings, sexual assaults, inadequate access to food and water, inadequate access to healthcare, and verbal abuse against women. These egregious and intolerable acts occurred despite North Korea’s ratification of three major international human rights treaties (ICCPR, ICESCR, and CEDAW) that directly relate to the rights of women.
These three treaties obligate North Korea to, among other things, respect human life, provide women appropriate health care services during pregnancy, ensure the rights of each child without discrimination of any kind, ensure to the maximum extent possible the survival and development of the child, and refrain from subjecting anyone to cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment. North Korea has not fulfilled its obligations. Rather, North Korea has continuously violated the human rights of women and unborn children in its territory in a manner that cannot be tolerated by the international community.
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