House to vote today on critical North Korea human rights billBlog
The North Korean people are enslaved and held hostage by a ruthless regime that is threatening the world with nuclear disaster. To keep America safe, we must fully deploy sanctions, diplomacy and information to compel Kim Jong Un to change course. That is why the House will vote today on H.R. 2061, the North Korean Human Rights Reauthorization Act. Here’s what you need to know before today’s vote:
The Kim regime continues to inflict gross human rights abuses on the North Korean people.
- “Kim Jong Un’s depravity and abuses of power have no bounds… The North’s authoritarian regime snatches teenagers out of school to be his sex slaves, forces members of the country’s upper class to watch executions and Kim is perfectly content to eat expensive lunches while his people subsist on grass…” (Newsweek, 9/21/17)
- “[E]xecutions are carried out in prison camps to incite fear and intimidation among potential escapees, and public executions are carried out for seemingly minor crimes, including the theft of farm produce such as corn and rice. …distribution of South Korean-produced media are also subject to executions, which are most commonly administered by shooting…” (Reuters, 7/18/17)
- “…the death penalty can be decreed for those caught communicating with the outside world, a minimum of ten years reeducation is the maximum punishment for simply watching South Korean media or listening to foreign radio…” (NK Daily, 5/21/14)
Kim Jong Un and his regime use propaganda, and an iron grip on information to keep the North Korean people in the dark. By reauthorizing U.S. programs that promote human rights, democracy, and freedom of information in North Korea – including by utilizing modern technology – H.R. 2061 will help expose the North Korean regime’s atrocities to the North Korean people so that they may finally know the truth about this ugly regime.
As Chairman Royce and Majority Leader McCarthy recently said: “The truth is Kim Jong Un’s greatest enemy. So as we step up sanctions to cut off the cash that funds Kim’s nuclear program, we must also break down barriers to truth in North Korea. This bill will update critical efforts to get real, accurate information into the hands of North Koreans through radio broadcasts, USB drives, mobile devices, and more. When Kim Jong Un has to answer to the North Korean people, he will pose far less danger to us.”