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North Korea

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Under the leadership of Kim Jong-un, the state of human rights in North Korea is dire. The government represses all forms of freedom of expression; it does not allow for any organized political opposition, independent media, free trade unions, civil society organizations, or religious and academic freedoms. A 2014 UN Commission of Inquiry found that the Government committed gross systematic and widespread abuses, including extermination, murder, enslavement, torture, imprisonment, rape, forced abortions, and other acts of sexual violence. North Korea operates prison camps where perceived opponents of the government are sent to face torture, starvation rations, and forced labor. Fear of collective punishment is used to silence dissent.

(Last updated: August 30 , 2021)

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