April 26, the Beijing Olympic torch relay ceremony is being
held in Nagano City, Japan. This day interestingly coincides
with the worldwide protest day for raising awareness of the violation
of human rights of North Korean refugees who have fled into China.
world protest day this year, LFNKR (Life Funds for North
Korean Refugees) is here in Nagano for a demonstration urging
the Chinese government to respect human lives and human rights.
recent disturbances in Tibet have obviously attracted the attention
of international society to the human rights issues
that remain unimproved in China. Typical examples are the ruthless
oppression of the Tibetans, ethnic cleansing in the Uyghur
Autonomous Region, oppression of Mongolian autonomy in Inner
arrest and detention of human rights lawyers and democratic
activists in China, and the repatriation of North Korean refugees,
puts their lives at dire risk.
Korean refugees have fled into China to seek the freedom
to live and gain access to food. But instead of finding freeedom,
they face Chinese authorities who arrest and repatriate them
to North Korea. There, they face the danger of death in concentration
camps, and in some cases summary public execution.
is another tragedy. Even if female North Korean defectors
choose marriage with Chinese men in order to survive, and become
mothers, the Chinese authorities arrest these mothers as illegal
immigrants, uproot them, and send them back to North Korea.
result is orphans who lose their mothers and, usually, are
abandoned by their Chinese fathers. The number of these orphans
estimated at up to 60,000 to 70,000. The repatriation of these
North Korean defectors by the Chinese government violates their
human rights and is counter to all humanitarianism.
also violates the International Convention on the Status of
being a signatory to this Refugees Convention, is liable
by law to observe its conditions.
Olympics is a “festival of peace and friendship.” LFNKR
is heartily in favor of the Olympics as they are based on this
noble spirit. However, the serious ongoing violations of human
rights in China, which seem to be worsening as the Beijing Olympics
approach, obviously blackens and demeans the traditional spirit
of the Olympics.
China be allowed, without protest, to continue this behavior
that runs so counter to the spirit of the Olympics?
Life Funds for North Korean Refugees (NPO)
A-101, 2-2-8 Nishikata, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-0024