North Korea human rights probe urged by UN

UN officials say a probe of North Korea is needed to fully document the responsibility of government and individuals for alleged abuses 'in particular where they amount to crimes against humanity.'

Korean Central News Agency via Korea News Service/AP
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un attends an enlarged meeting of the Central Military Commission of the Workers' Party of Korea at an undisclosed location of North Korea in this undated photo.

A report by a U.N. special investigator on Tuesday urged the world body to open an inquiry into North Korea for possible crimes against humanity.

U.N. special rapporteur Marzuki Darusman recommended to the Geneva-based Human Rights Council that it authorize an investigation of North Korea's "grave, widespread and systematic violations of human rights."

Darusman's report Tuesday says a review of the isolated country's record since 2004 shows the need for a probe to fully document the responsibility of government and individuals for alleged abuses "in particular where they amount to crimes against humanity."

The report cites nine patterns of violations, such as prison camps, enforced disappearances and using food to control people, based on what it calls an analysis of a ream of U.N. documents including 22 previous reports over the past nine years and 16 resolutions adopted by the U.N. General Assembly, which now includes 193 member nations.

In a response to the report before it was made public, North Korea's U.N. Ambassador in Geneva, So Se Pyong, denounced the report and described Darusman — a former attorney general of Indonesia — as a "politically motivated" official whose job amounts to serving as "none other than a marionette running here and there in order to represent the ill-minded purposes of the string-pullers such as the United States, Japan and the member states of the (European Union)."

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