North Korea 'categorically' rejects UN rights resolution

"Soldier-builders" carry things in central Pyongyang.
"Soldier-builders" carry things in central Pyongyang.PHOTO: REUTERS

SEOUL (AFP) - North Korea on Saturday (Nov 21) rejected a UN resolution on its human rights violations as a product of the hostile policy by the United States seeking to topple its socialist regime.

A UN General Assembly committee on Thursday (Nov 19) adopted by a record majority a resolution condemning "systematic, widespread and gross" human rights violations in the Stalinist state.

For the second consecutive year, it encourages the Security Council to consider referring Pyongyang to the International Criminal Court for crimes against humanity, a move that is likely to be blocked by the North's closest ally China which has veto power in the council.

"We categorically reject 'the human rights resolution', a vivid expression of the US hostile policy toward the DPRK (North Korea) and a typical example of politicisation of human rights... and double-standards, as it is a serious politically-motivated provocative document", a foreign ministry spokesman was quoted as saying by the North's official KCNA news agency.

The move proved the "absurdity of 'the human rights campaign' of the hostile forces including the US which is aimed at overturning the social system in the DPRK", he said.

He stressed ongoing chaos and bloodshed in the Middle East came as the countries in the region failed to fend off outside interference being made "under the pretexts of human rights and democracy".

"The miserable situation in several regions of the world eloquently proves that human rights precisely mean sovereignty and it is quite right for the DPRK to respond to any plot to overthrow the socialist system in the DPRK with a tough stand."

"Now that the UN is being abused as a theatre for hurling slanders at the DPRK under the manipulation of the US and the West, the DPRK will take corresponding measures", the spokesman said, without elaborating.

Professor Yang Moo-Jin of the University of North Korean Studies in Seoul said the North was unlikely to respond by carrying out major provocative acts.

"North Korea has never reacted to what they call human rights offensives with such major provocative acts as missile launches or nuclear tests in the past, which it thinks would be too disproportionate a reaction," Yang said.