‘Brutal’ US-led UN sanctions constitute ‘genocide, rights violations:’ North Korea

November 4, 2017 9:55 am
Members of the Security Council vote at a Security Council meeting over North ’s new sanctions on September 11, 2017 at the Headquarters in New York. (Photo by AFP)
has slammed the “brutal” US-backed sanctions imposed by the UN on the country over its military program, saying such pressure tactics amount to “human rights violations” and “genocide.”
“Today, the US-led racket of brutal sanctions and pressure against the DPRK constitutes contemporary human rights violation and genocide,” the North Korean mission to the UN in Geneva said in a statement on Friday, using the abbreviation for the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the country’s official name.
The sanctions regime “threatens and impedes the enjoyment by the people of DPRK of their human rights in all sectors,” the statement noted.
The call for a halt to the North Korean sanctions was made after the UN Security Council slapped a new raft of bans to hinder Pyongyang’s nuclear and ballistic missiles program following its sixth and most powerful nuclear test early in September.
The new sanctions included export bans as well as asset freezes and travel bans on various North Korean officials.
In late October, the UN’s special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in North Korea, Tomas Ojea Quintana, warned that the new anti-Pyongyang restrictive measures may be hurting key economic sectors and hampering the human rights of North Korean citizens.
The North Korean mission further called for an end to the sanctions, which mean that “some unprincipled countries have blocked the delivery of medical equipment and medicines.”
Such humanitarian supplies, he added, are destined for children and mothers in the country.
“All types of anti-human rights and inhumane sanctions against the DPRK should be terminated immediately and thoroughly,” it added.
Besides the UN sanctions, Washington has also slapped its own sanctions on seven North Korean individuals and three entities last month over what it called serious human rights abuses, including forced labor.
The Friday statement comes as US President Donald Trump is scheduled to set off on a three-day trip to on November 5, visiting China, South Korea and Japan to drum up support for pressuring North Korea over its missile and nuclear programs.
Tensions between the US and North Korea reached its peak a few months after inauguration of Trump, who threatened the Asian state with “fire and fury the world has never seen” back in August.
North Korea has been the target of harsh international bans since 2006 over its nuclear tests as well as multiple rocket and missile launches.
Pyongyang has firmly defended its military program as a deterrent against hostile policies of the US and its regional allies, including South Korea and Japan.
The US has substantial military presence in the region and has several times threatened North Korea with military action.
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