New DVD Reveals Execution Judgment

Cho Jong Ik  |  2011-08-19 17:25
Korea Institute for National Unification (KINU) has produced a 16-minute DVD to try and forge a greater public understanding of North Korean human rights issues such as public executions and political prison camps.

Most notably, the newly released DVD explains how, following the failed 2009 currency redenomination and with the need to maintain the regime in the face of overt resentment on the part of the people, the authorities undertook to increase the number of public executions that took place, claiming that more than 60 such executions occurred during 2010.

The most important piece of new evidence in the DVD is a legal judgment declaration showing the legal process by which one public execution during this period was carried out. In it, a man of 40 named Ri Seong Cheol is sentenced to execution by a North Korean court for the September, 2010 theft of items worth 341,900 North Korean won, including 6 cows.

Issued in the name of the Supreme Court, the declaration also conveys the court’s decision to the administrative department of the Workers’ Party Central Committee for approval, stating, “With regards to defendant Ri Seong Cheol, who has been sentenced to the death penalty by Pyongyang City Court, the Supreme Court requests approval for public execution.”

On the significance of the judgment declaration, Kim Soo Am of KINU explained, “This is a first. The North Korean authorities have been denying the existence of public executions, so in terms of confirming that they have been performing such executions all along, this official document is extremely meaningful.”

Meanwhile, on the idea behind the DVD, Kim added, “We believe that the North Korea Human Rights White Paper we publish is hard for the average person to take in, so we produced this video to help people easily understand.”
 
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