Exposing North Korea’s Human Rights Abuse: An Evening with 3 Exiles
10 March 2016, 19:00–21:00
Location: MEET 116 | SOAS | Thornhaugh Street | Russell Square | London WC1H 0XG
Hosted by the SOAS Korea Society
North Korea’s human rights abuses are, according to a UN Commission of Inquiry, “unparalleled in the contemporary world.” Join us for an evening of discussion with 3 North Korean exiles on their lives in North Korea and what they think can be done to improve human rights.
Jihyun Park is the North Korean Outreach and Project Officer at the European Alliance for Human Rights in North Korea. She manages their Korean-language output, builds their relations with North Korean refugees, and oversees all their projects.
She holds a Mathematics and Science degree from a university in North Korea. Prior to leaving North Korea, she was a teacher in a high school.
She gave testimony of her experiences of being trafficked and repatriated at the UN Commission of Inquiry’s London hearings. Her story has featured in a high-profile Amnesty International campaign, various magazines and newspapers, and in two short documentaries.
Ji Hyeon-a is from Chongjin City, North Korea. She entered South Korea in 2007. In 2011, she published a memoir, titled ‘A Thousand Miles for Freedom’, which reflects on her time as a prisoner, her escape, and human rights.
Ms. Ji is part of the North Korean Writers in Exile section of PEN International, a student of political science at Chonnam National University, and is heavily involved in various unification and human rights-related organisations.
She gave testimony at the COI hearings on her experiences of being repatriated and a little on her experiences of having her religious freedom violated.
Oh Sehyuk was the first North Korean refugee to be granted a Chevening Scholarship, which he used to study for a master’s degree at the University of Sheffield.
Sehyek defected from North Korea in 1999 from his hometown in Hwanghae. After 3 years in China, he escaped the country via the German embassy in Beijing with the help of an American pastor – a case that was widely reported at the time.
Today, Mr. Oh is a Researcher for the Transitional Justice Working Group. Prior to that, he worked for Daily NK, and has a long standing involvement in the North Korean human rights movement.
7.05pm: Short speech by Michael Glendinning, EAHRNK Director
7.10pm: Speech from Jihyun Park
7.25pm: Speech from Ji Hyeon-a
7.40pm: Speech from Oh Sehyuk
7.55pm – 8.30pm: Q&A