When Dennis Rodman visited North Korea in September he described it as a “party,” but when UN investigators interviewed escapees from the country they found something completely different-evidence of torture, “detention, summary execution, forced abortion and other forms of sexual violence.”
UN investigators also found China played a key role in enabling North Korean atrocities.
According to the International Business Times, after a September visit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, Rodman described it as a “seven-star party.” He said Jong-un’s private island was “like Hawaii or Ibiza, but he’s the only one that lives there.” Rodman said Jong-un liked having people around him, and he liked them “to be happy.”
However, according to a UN report published by Reuters, the real North Korea looks far different from the fantasy island Rodman visited. In the real North Korea there are tanks in which people are dunked upside down as a means of torture. While being dunked, they have needles pushed under their fingernails.
In the real North Korea, there are four operational prison camps where political dissidents and others are tortured, interrogated, starved, and killed the report claims. Altogether, 80,000 to 120,000 prisoners are kept in these camps.
Some of the worst treatment North Koreans receive comes after they are sent back to North Korea from China. This repatriation results in torture and sexual violence to the most heinous degree. UN investigators observed that China could spare these humans a world of misery by halting the practice, yet China does not relent in deporting escapees.
On December 16th, chairman Michael Kirby of the UN’s Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in North Korea sent a letter to China’s ambassador in Geneva warning that the continued forced repatriation “could amount to… aiding and abetting crimes against humanity.” The ambassador responded that those being repatriated are criminals and on those grounds are being returned to North Korea.
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter @AWRHawkins.