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UN condemns North Korean human rights violations

The United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution Monday condemning the "systematic, widespread and gross" human rights violations in North Korea.

The non-binding resolution, which was passed by consensus without a vote, welcomes diplomatic efforts to end the crisis on the Korean peninsula.

But it emphasizes that members are "deeply concerned at the grave human rights situation, the pervasive culture of impunity and the lack of accountability for human rights violations in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea."

It also denounces the use of torture as well as "inhumane conditions of detention, rape, public executions, extrajudicial and arbitrary detention" and "the existence of an extensive system of political prison camps."

Pyongyang's mission to the UN attacked the US's willingness to organize a Security Council meeting on human rights in North Korea.

In early December, Washington had given up asking for the meeting, which had been held every year since 2014, because it was unsure of the support it would get from partners.

But the US hopes to hold the meeting in January with the arrival of new non-permanent council members that could be more favorable to doing so.

"The UN Security Council is neither a place for discussion on any human rights issue nor a platform where a human rights issue is politicized to flare up confrontation," North Korea's UN mission said in a statement.

"The UN Security Council should not be misused as a platform again where US's high-handedness and arbitrary practice would prevail, and should remain true to its mission and duties as enshrined in the UN Charter," it said.

Published : December 17, 2018

By : Agence France-Presse United Nations, United States