10/01/2018 China (International Christian Concern) – Every year many North Koreans seek to flee the country and find refuge in China. From China, many refugees move into other countries to find asylum. Fleeing North Korea is against the law and is punishable by death. North Koreans who flee are aware of the fate that awaits them if they get caught trying to flee or are sent back home.
Many countries are open to North Korea refugees and give them a place of asylum. China, however does the unthinkable and sends all escapees back to North Korea. These North Koreans who return home are sure to face torture, imprisonment, labor camps, and death. North Korean escapees are known to carry with them poison to take in the case of getting caught. Knowing the fate that lies before them, many would rather die at their own hands than return to North Korea.
Over the las 20 years, China has forcibly returned tens of thousands of North Koreans. After an investigation by the UN, a representative stated that China is “aiding and abetting in crimes against humanity” by forcing these individuals to return back to their homes.
On Monday, September 24th Chinese embassies in 11 countries and 22 cities across the world pretested the forced-repatriation of North Koreans. The North Korean Freedom Coalition, organized the event at consulates throughout the world calling it a “Save North Korean Refugees Day”.
The protest took place in Washington D.C. as well. The protest began at CCTV –China’s English Language News network and ended at the Chinese embassy where a letter was delivered appealing Chinese President Xi Jinping to end the repatriation of refugees. Before calling it a night, the crowd took turns reading the long list of the names of known North Koreans who were forced back to North Korea. These names included those of children, elderly, and pregnant women who were forced to abort.
For interviews with Gina Goh, ICC’s Regional Manager, please contact Olivia Miller, Communications Coordinator: [email protected].