General Statement on the Situation of Human Rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea

Jennifer Barber
Special Advisor and Public Delegate
U.S. Mission to the United Nations
New York, New York
November 18, 2020


Thank you, Chairperson.

The United States thanks the European Union for introducing this resolution that emphasizes the importance of accountability for human rights violations and abuses committed by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. The United States is proud to co-sponsor this resolution.

The human rights and humanitarian situations in the DPRK remain dire. The UN Commission of Inquiry’s account of the human rights violations and abuses committed by the regime continues to inform our understanding of the situation in the DPRK today. The COI findings describe human rights violations and abuses that are “systematic, widespread, and gross,” including those involving “extermination, murder, enslavement, torture, imprisonment, rape, forced abortion and other sexual violence, persecution of political, religious, racial and gender groups, the forcible transfer of populations, and the enforced disappearance of persons and the inhumane act of knowingly causing prolonged starvation.”

With passage of this resolution, the international community once again sends a clear message to the DPRK regime that human rights violations and abuses must stop and those responsible held to account. We urge the Government of the DPRK to demonstrate respect for human rights, honor its commitments to implementing recommendations from Universal Periodic Reviews, and cooperate with the UN Special Rapporteur for the situation of human rights in the DPRK.

We addressed U.S. concerns with the reference to the International Criminal Court in a separate general statement delivered on November 13.

Thank you, Chairperson.