Video captures North Korean 'executions'

Click to follow
The Independent Online

A Japanese NGO has released a video showing what it says are summary trials and public executions of defectors in North Korea.

A Japanese NGO has released a video showing what it says are summary trials and public executions of defectors in North Korea.

Filmed with a concealed camera, one scene shows a man being shot by a firing squad in front of 1,000 people in what the NGO, Life Funds for North Korean Refugees, says is the northern city of Yuson, near the Chinese border.

The executed man, identified as Han Bok-Nam, is accused in the video of being an "atrocity in human skin" who had "lured sweet women with lying words" and "sold them to human traffickers abroad" - a cover charge for aiding defectors, the NGO says. "Helping anyone escape from that country is classed as criminal activity and is termed human trafficking or abduction," Life Funds says.

In a second scene, two men identified as Choi Jae-kon and Park Myong-kil are executed after being accused of trying to defect. "This evidence proves what we have been saying for some time and what has been common testimony from defectors coming out of North Korea," Hiroshi Kato, Life Funds' general secretary, said. "The Pyongyang government is killing people who are caught and brought back. We believe these sort of public executions take place every week."

Hundreds of thousands of defectors from North Korea are scattered throughout Asia, including an estimated 300,000 in China where authorities consider them illegal migrants. Rumours have long circulated that some of those caught and repatriated are killed as an example to others.

"The government is saying: 'This is what happens when you try to cross the border'," Mr Kato said.

The footage, released to Japanese television networks, shows 12 people being executed for crimes such as illegal production of opium and buying and selling foreign currency. "We hope this video will help bring an immediate stop to the repatriation of North Korean refugees and encourage their protection," Mr Kato said.

Comments