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North Korea Chapter - 2017 Annual Report

North Korea Chapter - 2017 Annual Report

Korean Translation

Key Findings

The North Korean government continues to rank as one of the world’s most repressive regimes, in part because of its deplorable human rights record. Freedom of religion or belief does not exist and is, in fact, profoundly suppressed. The regime considers religion to pose the utmost threat— both to its own survival and that of the country. The North Korean government relentlessly persecutes and punishes religious believers through arrest, torture, imprisonment, and sometimes execution. Once imprisoned, religious believers typically are sent to political prison camps where they are treated with extraordinary cruelty. Based on the North Korean government’s longstanding and continuing record of systematic, ongoing, and egregious violations of freedom of religion or belief, USCIRF again finds that North Korea, also known as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), merits designation in 2017 as a “country of particular concern,” or CPC, under the International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA). The State Department has designated North Korea as a CPC since 2001, most recently in October 2016.