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North Korea's Human Rights Record Assailed As Nation Prepares For Transition of Power

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Uploaded on Dec 20, 2011

www.democracynow.org — Democracy Now! looks at the human rights legacy of North Korean leader Kim Jong-il and what may lie ahead as his 29-year-old son, Kim Jong-un, prepares to take power. "There are tens of thousands of North Koreans who are in labor camps, often working for around 12 hours a day, if not more," says T. Kumar, Amnesty International USA's Advocacy Director for Asia and the Pacific. He notes more than one million people have died from starvation, not just due to famine, but also because the military has blocked food distribution to its political opponents. "The other issues are public executions and executions of political opponents [and] imprisonment of political dissidents. So the list goes on and on." Amnesty International has called on the Obama administration to ensure future international food aid is not linked to ongoing policy negotiations, and wants more international observers allowed into North Korea. We also speak with Christine Ahn, executive director of the Korea Policy Institute.

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