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HRNK Brief
Your September Brief 2017
November 07, 2017



HRNK Briefs are a series of reports collected by our interns from relevant panels, conferences, and events to deliver timely and
useful information to the North Korea community of interest. This is a monthly effort to update HRNK supporters on current events and
policy considerations surrounding North Korea. 

Last month, we prepared reports on thirteen different events in
Washington, DC and Virginia.

Here is what you need to know: 
Human Rights
On September 11, 2017, HRNK Executive Director Greg Scarlatoiu spoke along with President and CEO of the Mansfield Foundation, Frank Jannuzi, at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington, DC. During the press briefing, Greg Scarlatoiu emphasized that each and every conceivable human right is violated in North Korea and that it is the only country still running a political prison camp system, in which 120,000 men, women, and children continue to be imprisoned. Frank Jannuzi spoke about the growth of the North Korean economy led by the private or quasi-private sector, Chinese direct investment, and North Koreans working abroad.
​From left to right: Michael J. Green, ​Eriko Yamatani, Takuya Yokota, and Yoichi Shimada.
On September 13, 2017, the Center for Strategic and International Studies hosted the panel discussion "An Update on North Korea’s Abduction of Japanese Citizens.For an in-depth report on listing North Korea as a State Sponsor of Terrorism, see Joshua Stanton, Arsenal of Terror: North Korea, State Sponsor of Terrorism (Washington, DC: Committee for Human Rights in North Korea, 2015), https://www.hrnk.org/uploads/pdfs/4_27_15_Stanton_ArsenalofTerror.pdf.
The North Korea Crisis: Causes and Cures (September 18, 2017)
​From left to right: Joseph DeTrani, former U.S. Special Envoy to the Six Party Talks,
Greg Scarlatoiu, Executive Director of the Committee for Human Rights in North Korea,
​and Lt. Gen. Wallace "Chip" Gregson. (USMC, Ret.) Photograph credit: CFTNI.
On September 18, 2017, HRNK Executive Director Greg Scarlatoiu spoke on a panel discussion entitled, “The North Korea Crisis: Causes and Cures,” hosted by the Center for the National Interest, along with Joseph DeTrani, former U.S. Special Envoy for the Six Party Talks with North Korea. The speakers provided an overview of regime dynamics, human rights, humanitarian, military, political security, and diplomatic issues. The event can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tijFdPrCg8s.
The Venerable Pomnyun Sunim at the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Foundation.​
On September 25, the Mansfield Foundation hosted a round table discussion with the Venerable Pomnyun Sunim, a Buddhist monk, activist, and founder of the nongovernmental organization Good Friends for Peace, Human Rights, and Refugee Issues. The Venerable Pomnyun Sunim drew from his experience and contacts in North Korea to suggest steps toward resolving the current crisis. 

From left to right: Victor Cha, Michael Pillsbury, Young-Kwan Yoon, Abraham Denmark, and Kang Choi. Photograph Credit: CSIS. ​
On September 5, 2017, Young-Kwan Yoon, professor emeritus of International Relations at Seoul National University and former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Republic of Korea, along with Kang Choi, Abraham Denmark, and Michael Pillsbury, spoke on the panel titled, "Opportunities and Challenges for the Alliance.
From left to right: Moderator James L. Schoff, Christopher Hill, 
​Mitoji Yabunaka, Keiji Nakatsuji, and Douglas H. Paal.​
On September 18, 2017, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace hosted "Weighing Bad Options: Past Diplomacy with North Korea and Alliance Options." Panelists emphasized the need to recognize the serious threat posed by North Korea due to its continued development of missiles and nuclear weapons. 
From left to right: Robert Craft, Renee Doplick, Thomas Graham Jr, and Missy Ryan. 
Photograph Credit: UNA-NCA. ​​
On September 20, 2017, UNA-NCA (United Nations Association-National Capital Area) and its International Law Committee organized a panel discussion, "The North Korean Nuclear Challenge," on the threat posed by North Korean nuclear weapons and weapon delivery vehicles, North Korea's international behavior and objectives, and UN sanctions. 
From left to right: Moderator Bob Schieffer, Michael J. Green, Sue Mi Terry, and David Sanger. 
​Photograph Credit: CSIS. ​
On September 26, 2017, the Center for Strategic and International Studies hosted a discussion entitled “North Korea: Next Steps.” David Sanger, The New York Times National Security Correspondent, Sue Mi Terry, former Korea Analyst for the CIA, and Michael Green, Senior Vice President for Asia and Japan Chair of CSIS, participated in the panel discussion. 
From left to right: Mark Fitzpatrick and Ellen Laipson​​
On September 29, 2017, the Center for Security Policy Studies hosted a seminar entitled, "North Korea and the Nuclear Future." Mark Fitzpatrick discussed the current nuclear state of North Korea and what it means to the national security of the United States. 

From left to right: Susan A. Thornton and  the Honorable Marshall Billingslea. Photograph Credit: ​the House Foreign Affairs Committee 
On September 12, 2017, the House Foreign Affairs Committee hosted a hearing, "Sanctions, Diplomacy, and Information: Pressuring North Koreafocusing on economic and political strategies toward North Korea. Susan Thornton presented current US policy toward NK, signs of progress, and suggestions for the next step, stressing that we should not lose sight of the plight of the US citizens detained by NK nor of the regime’s egregious human rights violations.
B.G. Muhn spoke at the Art League in Alexandria, VA
On September 9, 2017, Professor Muhn shared his experiences from frequent research trips, including his interviews with numerous artists, art historians, faculty members, and students of the Pyongyang Art College to provide a better understanding of North Korean art.

Please find a PDF compilation of all event reports here:

Please note that the views and opinions expressed by the speakers do not necessarily represent the views or official position of HRNK or its Board of Directors. While not verbatim transcriptions, every effort has been made to accurately depict the speakers' presentations and views. Any error or omission is unintentional and will be corrected upon notification and request. These notes are based on events open to a public audience.

About HRNK:
The Committee for Human Rights in North Korea (HRNK), founded in 2001 and based in Washington DC, is a non-partisan human rights organization whose princ
ipal objective is to raise international awareness of North Korea's human rights situation through the publication of well documented reports and by undertaking outreach activities in support of the recommendations in those reports. More information about HRNK is available at www.hrnk.org
Copyright © 2017 Committee for Human Rights in North Korea (HRNK). All rights reserved.​​

THE REPORT IS EMBARGOED UNTIL 12:01 A.M. EST WEDNESDAY DEC. 19, 2018. Denied from the Start: Human Rights at the Local Level in North Korea is a comprehensive study of how North Korea’s Kim regime denies human rights for each and every citizen of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK). In doing so, this report examines human rights denial policies and practices. Local institutions are responsible for this denial at the schools, housing units, workplaces, and beyon

In this submission, HRNK focuses its attention on the DPRK’s—  1. System of political imprisonment, wherein a multitude of human rights violations are evidenced, including enforced disappearance, amounting to crimes against humanity.  2. Restrictions on freedom of movement, affecting women in particular, as evidenced in sexual violence, human trafficking, and arbitrary detention.  3. Policy of social and political discrimination, known as “so

From Cradle to Grave: The Path of North Korean Innocents
Robert Collins and Amanda Mortwedt Oh
Nov 13, 2017

This paper draws on existing research and Robert Collins’ previous work to explain the ideological basis and institutional structure of the Kim regime’s rule of terror, with an emphasis on the political prison camps. It is intended to provide a brief overview of how North Korea’s party-state controls every individual’s life from the cradle to the grave through relentless indoctrination, surveillance, and punishment. Specifically, it seeks to answer the following questions: What so

The Parallel Gulag: North Korea's
David Hawk with Amanda Mortwedt Oh
Oct 26, 2017

In this book, David Hawk provides never-before-seen imagery of labor re-education camps, both suspected and confirmed. He reveals a parallel network of prisons controlled by the DPRK’s Ministry of People’s Security (An-jeon-bu). These revelations suggest the imposition of degrees of suffering even more pervasive than the UN COI described in 2014. Although these labor camps might be described as “ordinary prisons”, there is nothing “ordinary” in the treatment of those i

North Korea Camp No. 25 Update 2
Joseph S. Bermudez Jr., Andy Dinville, and Mike Eley
Nov 29, 2016

p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 9.0px Helvetica; color: #3f5864} span.s1 {font: 5.0px Helvetica} As part of a joint undertaking with HRNK to use satellite imagery to shed light on human suffering in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK, more commonly known as North Korea), AllSource Analysis has been monitoring activity at political prison facilities throughout North Korea. This report details activity observed during the past

North Korea: Flooding at Kyo-hwa-so No. 12, Jongo-ri
Greg Scarlatoiu and Joseph S. Bermudez Jr.
Sep 16, 2016

The Committee for Human Rights in North Korea (HRNK), a non-governmental organization based in Washington, DC and AllSource Analysis, a leading global provider of high-resolution earth imagery solutions, have conducted a satellite imagery-based rapid assessment of flood damage at Kyo-hwa-so No. 12, Jongo-ri in Hamgyŏng-bukto, North Korea. Thousands of political prisoners are held in this re-education prison labor camp together with common offenders.