Toward Justice for Victims of the North Korean Regime

New York Law School Board Room
2-6pm, November 12, 2019

Despite sustained international calls for action following the landmark 2014 report by the UN Commission of Inquiry on human rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), the matter of crimes against humanity committed by the North Korean leadership is still overshadowed by a heavy focus on nuclear security issues. Distracted by North Korea’s diplomatic rapprochement and “charm offensive” strategies of “engagement”, concrete policies and possible measures to address abuses have not been fully realized by UN member states over the past five years.

In contrast, a growing number of human rights groups are advancing their efforts to apply the concept of transitional justice and develop effective strategies to tackle the matter. Scholars and experts in transitional justice working around the world have expressed growing interest in exploring policy directions and institutional arrangements to serve for sustainable justice and peace.

Building on Transitional Justice Working Group’s five years of geospatial mapping research on North Korean crimes against humanity and a multi-year survey of North Korean escapee views on transitional justice mechanisms from accountability to memorialization, the seminar will draw a strategic map for policymakers and human rights practitioners to respond to a potential political transition in North Korea and to plan directions for future work. Some 25 experts from human rights groups, academia, the media and diplomatic circles that have a proven record of shaping transitional justice policies or working on documentation and writing on human rights violations are gathered today to explore future challenges and to craft responses in an interdisciplinary way.


Download the workshop proceedings: Toward Transitional Justice for Victims of the North Korean Regime