UN CRITICISES N KOREA FOR HOLDING PUBLIC EXECUTIONS
October 23, 2008: North Korea is using public executions to intimidate its citizens, the UN investigator on human rights in the reclusive nation said. Vitit Muntarbhorn told the UN General Assembly's human rights committee that North Korea has also imposed more severe sanctions on people seeking to leave the country and those forcibly returned, and it still detains "very large numbers" of people in camps.
"The human rights situation in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea remains grave in a number of key areas," Muntarbhorn said. "Particularly disconcerting is the use of public executions to intimidate the public," he said.
"This is despite various law reforms in 2004 and 2005, which claim to have improved the criminal law framework and related sanctions."
He urged North Korea to terminate public executions, modernize the legal and prison systems and abide by the rule of law, and build an independent judiciary. (Sources: Deseret Morning News, 24/10/2008)