Russia Set to Deport NK Refugee

LFNKR faxed petitioning letters to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in France, the Russian Embassy in Tokyo, and related human rights groups asking to save the life of a North Korean refugee named Choi Myung-bok.

Mr. Choi was recently arrested by police in Russia, and the court’s ruling on his deportation is scheduled to be handed down on 10 February. 

A Russian human rights organization named “Memorial” also sent an appeal to ECHR in France asking them to save Choi from what would be almost certain death if repatriated to North Korea.

You can find more about Choi Myung-bok here.



On 7 February, we received word about a North Korean man named Mr. Choi Myung-bok who has lived and worked in Russia for over twenty years and who now faces forced deportation back to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK).

Our NGO knows from long experience helping refugees that when North Korean defectors are repatriated to their country of origin, they face harsh punishment, up to and including summary execution.

Mr. Choi Myung-bok will be accused of treason, which is punishable by imprisonment in a prison camp or worse. Whether he is sentenced to forced labor or to death, his forcible return would mean certain death for Mr. Choi. The court’s verdict will be handed down on 10 February.

We urge the Russian authorities to reconsider the status of Mr. Choi, who simply sought a better life in Russia, and not allow him to be sent to his death.