As we are gathered here today in Tokyo for this
International Conference, I wish to extend my personal welcome
to every one of you from abroad, as well as the participants who
have come from all around Japan.
A major objective of this conference, as we work
together, is to develop a specific action plan for protecting
North Korean refugees who flee their homeland into China. We will
explore ways to prevent the Chinese government from arresting
and repatriating them to North Korea. Every repatriated refugee
faces severe punishment, up to and including labor camps, where
abusive treatment often results in their death.
A second major objective is to discuss practical
tactics for protecting humanitarian aid workers involved in the
rescue of North Korean refugees. These aid workers are being aggressively
arrested and detained by the Chinese authorities. We also want
to develop strategies for effecting early release of all aid workers
I hope our combined efforts and teamwork will
achieve these two major objectives.
Life Funds for North Korean Refugees