North Korea

North Korea performs public executions. Current laws allow the death penalty for prostitution; “drug transactions”; plots against national sovereignty; terrorism; treason against the Motherland by citizens; treason against the people; murder

South Korea: Army conscript gets death penalty in appellate court for deadly shooting

The military appellate court sentenced an Army sergeant to the death penalty Monday for killing 5 fellow soldiers in a shooting rampage at a border outpost last year.
The ruling by the High Court for Armed Forces confirmed the capital punishment on the 23-year-old conscript, surnamed Lim, delivered by a local military court in February.
Five comrades were killed while seven others were wounded as Lim detonated a grenade and sprayed a hail of bullets in June last year in the military outpost of the 22nd Infantry Division near the tensely-guarded border in Goseong, Gangwon Province, 477 kilometers northeast of Seoul.
“The defendant inflicted grenade and shooting attacks on his fellow soldiers and superiors who were carrying out their sacred national defense duty at a front-line military unit located close to North Korean troops,” the military court said as reasons for the sentence.
“This caused a major vacuum in national defense and damaged public trust and morale inside the military,” the court said.
Right after the shooting involving a K-2 rifle, Lim fled with the gun and ammunition in order to kill himself, but was captured alive 2 days later.
Lim claimed the shooting was a result of bullying he faced inside the barracks, but the court did not accept the defense, dismissing the appeal.
In South Korea, all able-bodied men are required to fill nearly 2 years of mandatory military service as the country is technically at war with North Korea after the 1950-53 Korean War ended in an armistice agreement, not a peace treaty.
Source: Yonhap News, August 17, 2015



North Korea executes vice premier for discontent with leader: Yonhap

North Korea’s vice premier was executed by firing squad this year after showing discontent with the policies of the country’s leader Kim Jong Un, a South Korean media report said on Wednesday.
Yonhap News Agency cited an unnamed source as saying that the 63-year-old Choe Yong Gon, a former delegate for North-South cooperation, was executed, marking another death of a senior official in a series of high-level purges since Kim Jong Un took charge in late 2011.
The Yonhap report said Choe had expressed disagreement with Kim’s forestry policies in May and had shown poor work performance. It provided no further details.
South Korea’s Unification Ministry, which handles the country’s ties with North Korea, said in a text message received by Reuters that Choe had not been spotted in public for about eight months, and that it was closely monitoring the situation.
South Korea’s National Intelligence Service declined to comment on the report to Reuters.
The South Korean spy agency told lawmakers in May that North Korea had executed its defense chief by putting him in front of an anti-aircraft gun at a firing range.
Choe was appointed vice-premier last year, North Korea’s state-run KCNA news agency reported previously.
Yonhap said the source also said the reclusive state had publicly executed a senior Workers’ Party official in September.
Choe had worked on inter-Korean affairs in 2000s, leading the North’s delegation in joint economic cooperation committees with South Korea between 2003 and 2005.
He attended the 2004 opening ceremony of the Kaesong Industrial Complex, a factory park jointly run with Seoul that is the last remaining joint project of the 2 countries.
Source: Reuters, August 13, 2015


Kim Jong Un had terrapin farm manager executed, says source

Friday, July 10, 2015

Kim Jong Un had ordered the execution to make an example of the manager – and to reinforce North Korea’s politics of fear.
Kim Jong Un may have executed the manager of a terrapin farm the North Korean leader visited in May, according to a source in Pyongyang.
The terrapin farm had made headlines after May 19, when Kim expressed his displeasure regarding its operation.

South Korean news outlet Daily NK reported Kim might have executed the farm manager for not supplying sufficient water to aquarium tanks.

According to the news source, Kim Jong Un ordered the execution of the manager after providing field guidance at the Taedonggang terrapin farm.
“Food and water for the turtles were not being supplied sufficiently, that was the reason for execution by gun,” the source said.
South Korean news outlet Newsis reported North Korea’s charges of incompetence ignored the real reason for the supply issues.
Power outages were common at the farm, said the source, and the farm was not provided with adequate amounts of food for the turtles.
Kim Jong Un had ordered the execution to make an example of the manager – and to reinforce North Korea’s politics of fear, according to South Korea press.
During his visit in May, Kim reportedly reprimanded the farm’s management and said the managers were ruining the North Korean leader’s mission and the farm could not resume normal production levels.
“Ten million loyal citizens and military personnel are tirelessly preparing gifts for the 70th anniversary of the Korean Workers’ Party, by night and by day. I don’t know what this farm is planning for the celebrations in October,” Kim had said.
Daily NK’s source said the execution of the manager follows an ongoing trend in North Korea.
Subordinates at the turtle farm who wished to display their ultimate loyalty to Kim might have facilitated the death of the manager, said the source.
Source: UPI, July 6, 2015


1,400 North Koreans executed under the Kim Jong-un from 2008 to 2014: report

Nearly 1,400 North Koreans were executed under the Kim Jong-un regime from 2008 to 2014, according to a report released by the Korea Institute for National Unification (KINU), Wednesday.
The 455-page report, “White Paper on Human Rights in North Korea 2015,” showed that 1,382 were killed during the period.
KINU said its findings were based on the testimony of 221 people who defected from North Korea to South Korea in 2014. It added the witnesses were chosen based on their social backgrounds and demographic characteristics.
“We believe there were a number of executions that were not witnessed by those whom we interviewed,” an official at KINU’s strategy and public relations team said on condition of anonymity.
The white paper showed that North Korea’s state-perpetrated violations of human rights are still prevalent despite the United Nations’ pressure to end its crimes against humanity.
In particular, the reclusive state increasingly has executed people in recent years for watching and circulating films, TV dramas and other media content produced by South Korea, the report said.
It pointed out that such a wide use of the death penalty contradicts Pyongyang’s claim in a report submitted to the U.N. Human Rights Council in January 2014.
Back then, the Stalinist country said it carried out the death penalty only under “extremely limited circumstances.”
The KINU report showed people detained at a range of facilities such as prisons are tortured, while enduring a lack of nutrition, medical attention and hygiene.
It said people are exiled from their hometowns because of their family backgrounds, criminal record and the country’s economic development plan.
Since late 2013, the natives of Samjiyon County, a northeastern part of the country, have been subject to internal exile if they and their family members served in prisons, were caught attempting to flee the country, or have parents who were peasants.
Samjiyon County, which is in Ryanggang Province, is purportedly the hometown of late North Korean leader Kim Jong-il.
The report said members of some 600 households in Musan, North Hamgyeong Province and surrounding regions were forcibly moved out of their hometowns in 2013 under Kim Jong-un’s order to develop the area as “a model city.”
The white paper is published in Korean. Its English version will be available in August. The KINU report has been published in both Korean and English every year since 1996.
The U.N. launched its human rights office in Seoul on June 23 to better monitor and record North Korea’s human rights abuses. The office was set up in accordance with a U.N. Commission of Inquiry’s (COI) report in February last year. It accused the tyrannical regime of running political prison camps where up to 120,000 people are thought to be detained.
Based on the COI report, the U.N. General Assembly in December 2014 passed a resolution that calls for the referral of Kim Jong-un to the International Criminal Court in the Hague, The Netherlands.
Source: Korea Times, July 1, 2015


North Korean official ‘executed by flame-thrower’

april 8, 2014

Tokyo: A North Korean official has been executed with a flame-thrower, South Korean media has reported.

He is one of up to 11 senior party officials with close ties to Jang Song-taek — Kim Jong-un’s recently purged uncle — who have been apparently executed or sent to political prison camps.

Jang was publicly tried and executed in December after being found guilty of corruption and activities that ran counter to the policies of the Workers’ Party of Korea.

The regime has shut down the department within the Workers’ Party that Jang previously headed. O Sang-hon, a deputy minister at the ministry of public security, was “executed by flame-thrower”, a source told South Korea’s Chosun Ilbo newspaper.

O was executed because he had followed Jang’s instructions to turn the ministry into a personal security division to help safeguard his business dealings, the paper reported.

The report could not be confirmed, although previous executions have suggested that the North Korean leadership can be inventive when it comes to disposing of anyone who has fallen out of favour.

In 2012, a vice-minister of the army was executed with a mortar round for reportedly drinking and carousing during the official mourning period after Kim Jong-il’s death in December of the previous year.

On the orders of Kim Jong-un to leave “no trace of him behind, down to his hair”, Kim Chol was forced to stand on a spot that had been targeted for a mortar round and “obliterated”, South Korean media reported.

With the purges apparently continuing, there is concern in Seoul at further possible instability in Pyongyang, coupled with a renewed belligerence being demonstrated by the North.

The South Korean military has launched an intensive search across large areas of the country after a third unmanned reconnaissance drone was handed into authorities over the weekend.

The aircraft was more than 80 miles south of the heavily fortified border.

North Korea leaders accused of crimes against humanity

february 17, 2014

North Korea’s regime is committing crimes against humanity including the extermination, starvation and enslavement of its population, and its leadership should be hauled before an international court, a UN-mandated inquiry team has said.

The UN Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in North Korea published its report on Monday, with evidence of torture, rape and murder inside the country’s labour camps where political prisoners are held.

Presenting the report, the commission’s chairman Michael Kirby charged that the leaders of the state, including the supreme leader, Kim Jong-un, should answer evidence that they preside over such crimes against their people.

Kirby said: “The commission of inquiry came to the conclusion that there is abudant evidence… those who are in positions of power are accountable. All lines of authority stop at the supreme leader.

However, he said that the commission was not a tribunal nor a prosecutor, and it was for an international court to decide on any prosecution.

“We have not judged the supreme leader. Our job is to assemble the material and express conclusions.”

Kirby said: “In the course of this inquiry we have been asked, ‘can you expect anything to be done?” I do. This report will galvanaise action from the international community.

“How can we [ensure] those accountable to their own people, to their victims and to the bar of history? We expect and hope that the international community will respond.”

“At the end of the Second World War, so many people said: If only we had known… Now the international community does know. There will be no excusing of failure of action because we didn’t know.”

Powerful evidence

The UN commission was set up last March to begin building a case for possible criminal prosecution. It called more than 80 public hearings, and also used evidence gathered by the human rights group, Amnesty International.

Its report, which will be presented to the UN Human Rights Council next month, said: “Systemic, widespread and gross human rights violations have been and are being committed by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, its institutions and officials.

It detailed “extermination, murder, enslavement, torture, imprisonment, rape, forced abortions and other sexual violence”.

“In many instances, the violations of human rights found by the commission constitute crimes against humanity. These are not mere excesses of the State; they are essential components of a political system.”

Al Jazeera’s diplomatic editor, James Bays, said the UNHCR can only refer the evidence to the UN Security Council before any charges can be laid in the International Criminal Court.

China, North Korea’s only international ally, is a permanent member, and has the power of veto.

North Korea earlier on Monday hit out at the UN in a statement sent to Reuters. The government called the UN report “fabricated and invented” and an “instrument of political plot”.

“However, we will continue to strongly respond to the end to any attempt of regime-change and pressure under the pretext of ‘human rights protection’,” it said.

“The DPRK once again makes it clear that the human rights violations mentioned in the so-called ‘report’ do not exist in our country.”

(Source: Aljazeera)

Korean-Chinese man gets death penalty for Suwon murder

June 15, 2012 Source :

A Korean-Chinese man accused of kidnapping and killing a 28-year-old woman was sentenced to death Friday, two months after the high-profile murder that also exposed the carelessness of the police.

The Suwon District Court in Suwon, south of Seoul, handed down the death penalty to Wu Yuanchun, 42, citing the ruthlessness of his crime and his lack of remorse.

“The defendant killed the victim with sinister intentions that were not limited to rape, and has remained insincere ever since the crime. He shows no sign of repentance,” the court said in its ruling. “The death penalty deprives a person of his or her life and may be a punishment against humanity, but a strict call to accountability is unavoidable.”

The court also ordered Wu to wear an electronic anklet for 30 years and a public disclosure of his profile for 10 years.

According to the ruling, Wu attempted to rape the woman twice in his home on April 1 before killing her and carving out 365 pieces of her flesh.

The case dealt a blow to the police after officers were found to have delayed their initial response to an emergency phone call from the victim and wasted the opportunity to save her.

It also led to the resignation of then police chief Cho Hyun-oh, who took responsibility for the incident

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