Statement on Situation of Human Rights in North Korea

February 17, 2014 - Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird today issued the following statement in response to the release of the report of the UN Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea:

“Canada applauds the Commission’s work. The portrait the commissioners paint of systematic, widespread and grave violations of human rights confirms our worst fears.

“Canada unequivocally condemns the North Korean regime’s total disregard for freedom of expression and religion. The existence of gulags, arbitrary detentions, intergenerational punishment, forced abortions and indefinite holding of political prisoners is absolutely deplorable.

“We fully endorse the Commission’s call for accountability, including with regard to any potential crimes against humanity.

“We urge Kim Jong-un and his officials to respect the rights of all the citizens of North Korea, to close the country’s political prison camps and to give its people the basic freedoms to which all people are entitled.”

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