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International Campaign Launches to Save North Korean Refugees


(Washington, D.C.) The North Korea Freedom Coalition, a non partisan organization of over seventy organizations, has launched a campaign calling upon President Xi Jinping of China to end its policy of forcibly repatriating North Korean Refugees. Simultaneously, with a heart breaking story about nine children forced back to North Korea which aired on CNN-international, the NKFC released a Youtube video depicting testimonies of North Koreans who escaped through China after most of their family members had died of starvation in North Korea. The NKFC also re-released THE LIST of North Korean refugees and humanitarian workers seized by China. The NKFC is calling for people around the world to sign the online petition calling on China to end forced repatriation of North Koreans, which will be available at their website until December 10, 2013, International Human Rights Day. The NKFC plans to deliver the petitions to the Chinese embassy on that date. The Petition, The List, and Youtube Video (English with Korean and Chinese subtitles) can be seen at the NKFC website. Each September the Coalition has highlighted the plight of these refugees as part of Save North Korean Refugees Day as September marks the month that China became a signatory to the 1951 U.N. Convention on Refugees and its 1969 Protocol. Rather than abide by its international treaty obligations, China continues to forcefully repatriate North Korean refugees back to North Korea where they face certain torture, certain imprisonment and even execution. This policy has contributed to an environment of violent activity in China with North Korean agents assassinating humanitarian workers helping refugees and with the majority of North Korean female refugees being subjected to human trafficking. The NKFC has long argued that ending this repatriation policy would have a very positive benefit for China, because it would send a strong signal to the Kim Jong Un regime of their need to open to the very reforms China wishes to see. Furthermore, North Korean refugees are unlike any refugee population in the world because they have the ability to be immediately resettled in South Korea, as they have automatic citizenship under Articles 2 and 3 of the Republic of Korea's Constitution. In fact, already over 27,500 North Korean refugees have been safely resettled in South Korea and over twenty other nations. The NKFC is simply calling upon Xi Jinping to honor its treaty commitments by working with the UNHCR and the international community to resolve this issue and end needless suffering. For further information, visit