Three orphans being held in a jail in Laos

These three orphans managed to escape from North Korea, make their way through China, and were then arrested by Lao police. Here, they await processing before release to South Korean authorities.

Two foster children play in one of our shelters

These two orphans can finally relax and enjoy being off the streets and receiving an education. Each LFNKR member may sponsor an orphan or abandoned child being cared for in one or another of our shelters, sending financial help, encouragement and support.

A traditonal cherry blossom viewing party

North Korean refugees, now resettled in Japan, get together with LFNKR members to celebrate the coming of cherry blossoms and the first hint of spring in Tokyo.

Tokyo Bar Association Recognizes LFNKR

Life Funds for North Korean Refugees was awarded the Human Rights Prize by the Tokyo Bar Association

Former North Korean refugees wed

A refugee couple, one a former foster child and the other a recent defector from North Korea, have married. They invited Mr Kato and Ms Watanabe of LFNKR to stand in as parents.

13 year-old street child with severe burns

LFNKR, working jointly with a South Korean NGO, helped this kot-jebi (street child) receive urgently needed medical treatment after he lost both feet to the combined effects of frostbite and severe burns.

No Christmas Presents for North Korean Refugees?

While we enjoy our rich and exciting Christmas holidays, most North Koreans live in constant hunger.

As we know, it’s easy to be generous with those nearest us.  Far away, on the other side of the world, however, there are many tragic stories of starvation and fear. 

Mother & son wait 16 years for reunion

We reported, back in September, the LFNKR rescue team had successfully brought four North Korean refugees out to safe havens. One of these is Mr. Kim, who turned 22 while at a temporary holding center in Thailand.

After completing all the legal procedures, he finally arrived in Japan on Dec. 8. Awaiting him at Haneda Airport, together with the LFNKR members, was his mother, who eagerly greeted him on his arrival.

Can You Help Us Rescue Two NK Refugees and a Baby?

You are invited to join our rescue mission!

Rescuing refugees is a slow, careful process. It can’t be done in a wholesale manner so each mission is a one-of-a-kind effort. Over the years, LFNKR has helped more than 200 North Korean refugees escape to safe destinations where they have been able to start new lives. Just in September and October of this year alone, we successfully rescued a total of 5 North Korean refugees.

And now, we have begun another rescue mission. The current rescue is to help human trafficking victims: one is a 20-year-old woman, K.S. and her baby, who was born in July 2016. The other is a 33-year-old woman, Y.H.

Freed from Bondage

LFNKR is glad to report that, on Oct. 2, Kim Un-suk (not her real name), a North Korean woman, age 30, reached a safe place where she no longer has to fear repatriation.

Three years ago, Un-suk was sold by a human trafficker to a Chinese man in Harbin. He and his whole family kept her under constant watch to prevent her running away. She was not allowed to go out of his house, not allowed to do anything (except making a baby). She was utterly confined and given no freedom. She said she felt like a bird held in a cage.

LFNKR rescue staff had to patiently wait for the right moment to rescue the mother and her baby, and to lead them to a safe place. Mother and child will soon be resettled safely in South Korea.

We sincerely thank you for all the assistance you’ve given.

Four NK Refugees Safely Rescued

Four Successes

This month (September 2017), LFNKR rescued four refugees from North Korea. Two are the human trafficking victims whom we described in our previous blog post, and the other two are young males, both in their twenties. The two young men began their escape in Foeryong, North Korea. After managing to cross the border, and while hiding in a mountain in China, they luckily encountered a kind ethnic Korean-Chinese man who had come to the mountain hunting for mushrooms. The Korean-Chinese man knew someone who had formerly helped North Korea defectors in Longjin. This connection led to their relocation to safe destinations.

And if you were one of the many donors who helped us to help these refugees, please accept our thanks and the gratitude of the four young people who are free now thanks in large part to your generosity. Thank you.

Day Dedicated to Saving North Korean Refugees

September 22 was World “Save North Korean Refugees” Day

LFNKR sent out Letters of Petition to the Chinese embassy and all the consulates in Japan, urging China’s president Xi Jinping to provide to North Korea refugees who escape into China fair treatment according to the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, a document which China signed and ratified on September 24, 1982.

3 Young Women Trapped by Human Trafficking

Join Our Rescue Mission!

LFNKR has so far helped more than 200 North Korean refugees escape to safe destinations where they’ve been able to start new lives.

Earlier this week, we received urgent requests from three desperate North Korean women in China. They are all in their early thirties, victims of human trafficking.  Two of them had been sold to extremely poor Chinese farmers in Hebei.

Mapping Crimes Against Humanity in North Korea

New Report on Rights Abuses

Transitional Justice Working Group (TJWG), a Seoul-based non-governmental organization, published on July 19 a report entitled “Mapping Crimes Against Humanity in North Korea.”

Providing information on the killing sites, mass graves, and documentary evidence, the report adds to the report more specific information to the detailed findings of the commission of inquiry on human rights in DPRK” by UN Human Rights Council.

LFNKR applauds the great efforts of TJWG to prepare this unique report. It has already generated new momentum for thoroughly investigating the crimes against humanity in North Korea.

Mapping Crimes Against Humanity in North Korea