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Rights expert asks UN to notify North Korea of crimes against humanity probe

[JURIST] UN Special Rapporteur on the Democratic People's Republic of Korea [official website] Marzuki Darusman [official profile] is asking the UN to provide North Korea with notice that Kim Jong Un may be investigated for crimes against humanity. In a report [text, DOC] to the UN Human Rights Council made public Monday, Darusman outlines that North Korea's leader is ripe to be prosecuted for crimes against humanity, and that three independent legal experts should determine the best course of action to be established for both North Korea and victims of abuse. Darusman's report will be considered by the Human Rights Council next month.

North Korea has been an international source of concern due to the country's human rights record and instability. The US House of Representatives [official website] last month approved [press release] legislation that would increase sanctions against North Korea for its continuation of nuclear testing [JURIST report]. Japan and the EU recently circulated [JURIST report] a draft UN resolution condemning North Korea's human rights abuses and encouraging the UN Security Council to refer the country to the International Criminal Court [official website], noting reports of torture, limits on freedom of mobility, restrictions on freedom of speech, restrictions on freedom of religion, privacy infringement, arbitrary imprisonment, prison camps and more. Darusman expressed deep concerns [JURIST report] regarding human rights violations in the country just a month earlier. In November 2014 Darusman said that there is enough evidence to hold Kim Jong-un responsible for "massive" human rights atrocities [JURIST report] committed in the country. In response to these concerns, the UN in June opened a new office [JURIST report] in Seoul to specifically monitor human rights in North Korea.

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