GENEVA - The crimes of North Korea's regime are as chilling as those of the Nazis, South Africa's apartheid regime or Cambodia's Khmer Rouge and must be stopped, the head of a UN inquiry said Monday.
"Contending with the great scourges of Nazism, apartheid, the Khmer Rouge and other affronts required courage by great nations and ordinary human beings alike," Michael Kirby told the UN Human Rights Council.
"It is now your solemn duty to address the scourge of human rights violations and crimes against humanity in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea," he said.
His comments came a month after the investigators released a searing 400-page report documenting a range of gross human rights abuses in the country, including the extermination of people, enslavement and sexual violence.
"The gravity, scale, duration and nature of the unspeakable atrocities committed in the country reveal a totalitarian state that does not have any parallel in the contemporary world," Kirby said.
"The country is a dark abyss where the human rights, the dignity and the humanity of the people are controlled, denied and ultimately annihilated."