Life Funds for North Korean Refugees (LFNKR) urges each person
reading this to take part in the International Protest against
China’s Violent Treatment of North Korean Refugees. This
Protest, led by NORTH KOREA FREEDOM COALITION, is scheduled to
be held all around the World on April 28.
North Korean refugees who flee into China seeking food and freedom
immediately encounter the second plight – the constant
fear of arrest and repatriation by Chinese authorities.
This forces the refugees to seek ways to escape from China into
a third country such as South Korea or Japan, where they will
be safe. However, more and more of these North Koreans are running
into yet another barrier on their difficult journey to freedom.
Increasingly, they are being arrested and detained in jails or
immigration detention centers in the countries they must pass
through before reaching their intended destinations. And there
they are forcibly held for extended periods of time.
One recent and much-too-typical example is the 3 North Korean
orphans, who were detained in a Laotian jail for 4 months.
3 Orphans Plead for Help
3 Orphans Freed
Another example, this one in Thailand, is the 400 North Korean
refugees including babies, children and old women, who have all
been crammed for the past few months into a small jail, a space
built to hold only 100 at the maximum.
How long will these people have to suffer? They are good people,
honest people, who are tired of starving and being sent to labor
camps in their home country. They are merely doing what normal
people do – trying to reach someplace safe, where there
is enough food to survive and where they can be free. They have
already been internationally accepted as refugees.
China must also begin treating them as refugees and start allowing
UNHCR access to them.
You can join the International Protest by writing to the Chinese
Ambassador or Consul in your country. When you write, please
remind them that China is a signatory to the Convention on Refugees,
and urge them to treat North Korean defectors as refugees.
You may also want to get up to speed on this
issue by reading a couple of reports from LFNKR’s
2 Ton of Rice
Refugee, Now Living in Japan
Regards from Japan,