North Korea: UN Security Council meeting must refocus attention on neglected human rights situation

Ahead of Friday’s United Nations Security Council Arria-formula meeting on the Human Rights Situation in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), which will be co-hosted by the United States and Albania, Amnesty International’s Advocacy and United Nations Representative Sherine Tadros said:

“This meeting must serve to refocus the international community’s attention on the dire human rights situation in the DPRK.

“North Korean authorities have sought to conceal the suffering of people in the country. Their stranglehold on communications and information flow in and out of the country is an effort to cover up rampant human rights violations, including crimes under international law.

“The UN Security Council must use this Arria-formula meeting to send an unequivocal message to the North Korean authorities that systematic, widespread and gross human rights violations must end. The North Korean government cannot hide its crimes from the international community, nor continue to shirk their obligations to the UN with impunity.

“North Korean authorities must cooperate with the UN and let independent human rights monitors into the country. They should invite the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the DPRK to carry out a visit, and extend invitations to other UN Special Procedures, including those working on discrimination against women and girls, the right to health, trafficking in persons, and the right to freedom of opinion and expression.”


According to a press release by United States Mission to the UN, the Arria-formula meeting “is intended to shed a light on the DPRK’s ongoing human rights violations and abuses, underscore how they are directly linked with the threats to international peace and security posed by the DPRK’s unlawful WMD and ballistic missile programmes, and identify opportunities for the international community to promote the human rights and dignity of North Koreans.”

Arria-formula meetings are informal, private meetings, convened at the initiative of at least one member of the UN Security Council.