North Korea: Crimes against Humanity

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 27th March 2020.

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Photo of Lord Alton of Liverpool Lord Alton of Liverpool Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the statement by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights on 10 March that the government of North Korea may be responsible for crimes against humanity; and what plans they have to refer that government to the International Criminal Court.

Photo of Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Minister of State, The Minister of State, Department for International Development

The UK remains deeply concerned by the human rights situation in North Korea. The international community has a responsibility to respond to the human rights violations in North Korea which, as the UN Commission of Inquiry in 2014 concluded, may amount to crimes against humanity. The UK is fully committed to the principle that there must be no impunity for the most serious international crimes. North Korea is not a State Party to the International Criminal Court (ICC) and so a referral of the situation in North Korea could be made only by the UN Security Council in this instance. The UK continues to support an annual debate on North Korean human rights issues in the UN Security Council. We welcome the Human Rights Council resolution in March which provides the basis for further work on a credible framework for accountability.

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