Human Rights Council – 26th Regular Session
Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
Statement by Australia
18 June 2014
Australia thanks the Special Rapporteur for his important work in drawing attention to the appalling state of human rights in the DPRK.
The report of the Commission of Inquiry represents a breakthrough in documenting the human rights situation in the DPRK. Australia acknowledges the courage of the witnesses who spoke out about the atrocities being committed in the DPRK, and pay tribute to those victims who have survived and participated in the Inquiry.
We urge the DPRK to acknowledge the existence of human rights violations and the need for change, and to engage meaningfully with the international community to improve the lives of its citizens.
We urge the DPRK to implement the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry, including those on dismantling political prison camps, abolishing the death penalty, ending discrimination and repatriating abductees.
We welcome the decision to establish a field-based structure in the Republic of Korea to monitor and document the human rights situation in the DPRK in line with Resolution 25/25 of March 2014.
Australia continues to raise human rights bilaterally with the DPRK. We would be interested to hear the Special Rapporteur’s views on how other States can use their bilateral relations to influence the DPRK to improve its human rights record.