Tag Archives: Choi Yong-hun
Annual Activities Report
It is now obvious that North Korean defectors are being widely recognized and accepted as a legitimate issue by the international community. According to the resolution unanimously passed by the UN General Assembly last December, the UN special rapporteur on human rights in North Korea has been urging the North Korean government to correct its serious infringement of human rights and to allow the rapporteur entry into the country to investigate human rights there.
Friends greet Choi at airport
Following 3 years and 10 months of Chinese “hospitality”, Choi Yong-hun is back home in South Korea, reunited with his family.
Jailed in China for 3 years, 10 months
BREAKING NEWS: Choi Yong-hun, the South Korean humanitarian aid worker imprisoned by China for nearly 4 years left prison today and flew back home to South Korea. Choi was met at Incheon Airport this evening by close family members. And although he appears extremely weak following his imprisonment, he took the time to express his thanks to all those around the world who have supported him with their prayers, letters and other contributions.
China Still Violating Basic Human Rights
As a citizen’s group deeply involved in human rights, Life Funds for North Korean Refugees (LFNKR) has long called for more rapid improvement of human rights in China.
At the end of September, for example, Chinese border guards were videotaped firing upon a group of Tibetan pilgrims, including nuns and juvenile priests. At least two of the pilgrims were killed, prompting growing criticism of China by the international community.
Kim Bong Soon’s Letter
Hello, I am Kim Bong Soon, the wife of Choi Yong-hun.
My husband was arrested by the Chinese police in January 2003 for helping North Korean refugees and was sent to prison for 5 years. Today, he remains confined in the Weifang Prison, Shandong Province, China after serving 46 months of a 60-month sentence. He suffers from worsening chronic diabetes, hypertension, and asthma because of the poor living conditions in the prison.
No Early Release in Sight
Even though the United States recently accepted 6 North Korean refugees, marking a dramatic change in the situation of North Korean refugees, nothing has changed for Choi Yong-hun, the South Korean Humanitarian aid worker. He still sits in a jail cell in China, after having served 3 years and 4 months of a 5-year sentence. He is still being punished for his attempt to help North Korean refugees in China.
The UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention issued a report on May 27, 2005 calling China’s detention of Choi Yong Hun “arbitrary.” This term means he is in prison without just cause. Further, his detention is “in contravention of the provisions of article 10 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,” according to the report, and the Group called upon China to rectify the situation.
Journalists Swell the Crowd in Tokyo Demonstration
Actual participants numbered perhaps 30 or so, but with the journalists buzzing around our group, the crowd probably looked larger to the double-handful of guards blocking the gate to the Chinese embassy in Tokyo. We were careful to maintain order and obey the laws, but it appeared the embassy staff didn’t want to take chances. The guards remained serious and watchful throughout the protest.
NK Defectors Still Being Denied Right to Live
We were shocked to learn a few months ago that Choi Yong (male), a Japan-born North Korean, was executed after being repatriated. He was one of the two Japan-born North Koreans whom Takayuki Noguchi (of our organization) tried to help escape from China in December last year.
To Chinese Ambassador
Below is the text of a post card mailed by many Grand National Party members of the National Assembly, South Korea. The card was addressed to the Chinese Ambassador stationed in South Korea.
First Some Good News:
The South Korean aid worker, Kim Hee-tae, was found “not guilty” last month and released after being detained for nearly two years.
He was arrested while leading a group of North Korean defectors to Beijing to submit an official request for refugee status.
Contacts EU and UK Leaders
Below is the text of an appeal sent by Christian Solidarity Worldwide to EU and UK leaders on behalf of Mr. Park Yong-chol.
Is China Really a Part of the International Community?
On Dec. 11, 2003 a Chinese court utterly ignored pleas from the International community and its own country’s pledge to uphold the Convention on Refugees. That court sentenced aid worker Choi Yong-hun to 5 years in prison. At the same time, photojournalist Deok Jae-hyun received a sentence of 2 years in a Chinese prison. The crime of these two men? Helping their fellow man. Read the background details below.