The Six-Party talks in Beijing to discuss the elimination of
nuclear weapons from the Korean peninsula are dangerously close
to overshadowing the struggles of five North Korean refugees,
whose stories are being dwarfed and in danger of being forgotten.
On July 27th, LFNKR received information regarding five North
Koreans now seeking to be declared refugees.
At 11:30 am on Wednesday, 27 July, 2005, a group of five North
Korean refugees entered a Japanese residential quarter in Tentien,
China, where a Japanese international school is located. According
to reports, the five climbed the fence surrounding the compound
but were arrested by Chinese Security police 50 meters from the
school. The five refugees are now in the custody of Chinese Security
Police and are being investigated.
They are three North Korean women, ages 52, 48 and early 30s.
Accompanying one of the women were her son, age 22 and daughter
age 14. The family of three had defected from North Korea only
a week earlier.
We hereby emphatically urge:
That UNHCR Beijing intervene in this matter to protect and
grant these five North Koreans the status of refugee, and that
the UNHCR head office actively supervise its Beijing office as
it carries out this assignment.
Chinese government respect the principle of non-refoulement
from repatriating these five to North Korea where
they face high probability of severe punishment and persecution.
That the South Korean government immediately extend acceptance
of these five North Koreans and urge the Chinese government to
hand them over to the South Korean government.
Life Funds for North Korean Refugees