North Korean Holocaust
of little Han-mi were broadcast around the world two years
ago when her family dashed into the Japanese consulate
in Shenyang seeking refugee status. Han-mi stood crying
while Chinese guards wrestled her mother to the ground,
dragged them out and arrested them. Han-mi, now age four,
accompanied LFNKR members when we visited South Korean
Parliamentarians. In a pause between talks, she models
a minature Japanese flag on her nose.
cutting ceremony at the opening of the North Korean
Holocaust Exhibition in Seoul, November 8, 2004.
include former Korean Workers Party secretary Whang
Jang-yop, Defense Forum Institute president Suzanne
Scholte, Japanese Diet assemblyman Masaharu Nakagawa,
and Korean Grand National Party representative Kim Moon-soo.
left are Takayuki Noguchi, who spent 8 months in a Chinese
prison for helping North Korean refugees, Japanese Diet
member Masaharu Nakagawa, Hiroshi Kato, who was detained
and interrogated in China for 7 days for supplying winter
clothing and food to North Korean refugees in hiding.
At right is a woman who miraculously survived 8 years
in North Korea's harshest political prison camp. Both
Noguchi and Kato are LFNKR members.
Diet member Jeon Jae-hee signs petition requesting the
immediate release of Choi Yong-hun, the South Korean
aid worker now imprisoned in China. He was arrested
in January 2003 for attempting to help dozens of North
Koreans reach freedom. Chinese courts sentenced Choi
to 5 years for his part in the escape attempt, called
the Yantai boat people incident.
accompanied by Choi Yong-hun's wife, visited more than
60 South Korean lawmakers requesting assistance.
before noon on November 9, news was released that China
had unexpectedly repatriated the 62 North Korean refugees.
The organizers of the North
Korean Holocaust Exhibition, Moon Kuk-han, Suzanne
and Sin-U Nam, called an emergency demonstration in
front of the Chinese embassy in Seoul. Our group, LFNKR,
joined the protest, which was covered by more than a
dozen journalists from Asia and Europe.
observes the crowd from her father's shoulders.
works the crowd.
father holds a protest sign written in Japanese, which
says, "Choi Yong-hun's 5-year sentence is outrageous."
journalists arrived, the number of guards with plexiglass
shields and standing shoulder-to-shoulder also grew. The
guards formed a tight human wall to contain the protest.
All photos copyright
by LFNKR (Life Funds for North Korean Refugees)
All rights reserved worldwide.