International Justice

CJ354 Endicott College

China officially rejects U.N. report on crimes in North Korea

Unsurprisingly, Chinese officials have denounced the report alleging crimes against humanity in North Korea at the U.N. Human Rights Council monday morning, says an article from the New York Post. The report, published in February, recommended that the case in North Korea be referred to the International Criminal Court, and that the culpability of the crimes could reach as high as the supreme leader himself, Kim Jong-un. Counselor to the Chinese mission in Geneva, Chen Chuandong, rejected the report based on it’s lacking of substantial evidence for its claim, stating, “the inability of the commission to get support and cooperation from the country concerned makes it impossible for the commission to carry out its mandate in an impartial, objective and effective manner”. However, Chen fails to mention any attempt from China to persuade North Korea to be more cooperative with investigators, who have had to rely solely on testimony from victims that had escaped the regime. The great irony of Chen’s statement is that China is most likely the key opponent to a referral from the security council to the ICC and will likely veto any attempt to pass the case of North Korea along to the ICC for formal investigation. Simultaneously, the U.N., the United States, and the international community as a whole have seemingly exhausted all possible means of coercing North Korea to cooperate and address the crimes that have been alleged against them, and substantial pressure from China, North Korea’s closest ally, has perhaps the only chance of producing any visible behavior changes. Thus, China has the international community in a bind. In cases like this, however, where the country in question is so adamantly uncooperative that even preliminary investigation is impossible, must there be a separate standard of credibility for evidence of crimes against humanity that would warrant investigation, and what should the course of action for institutions like the U.N. and other organizations or governments concerned with human rights be?


The article from the New York Post can be found here:


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