North Korea infant jailed for life after parents found with Bible according to recent report
Posted May 29, 2023 by: Admin
In a deeply saddening development, a two-year-old child and their entire family have been subjected to political life imprisonment in North Korea after officials discovered a Bible in their possession. This distressing revelation comes from the US State Department’s International Religious Freedom Report 2022, which sheds light on the regime’s harsh crackdown on individuals with religious beliefs.
According to the report, an estimated 70,000 Christians and people of other faiths are currently imprisoned in North Korea, where the right to freedom of thought, conscience, and religion continues to be denied. António Guterres, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, expressed his concerns in the report, condemning the religious atrocities that have taken place in North Korea over the past years.
Due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, obtaining accurate information about religious persecution conditions has become challenging. However, the State Department managed to verify the details through non-governmental organizations (NGOs), human rights groups, and the United Nations.
Although a few registered institutions, including churches, exist in North Korea, they operate under strict state control and primarily serve as showcases for foreigners, according to visitors’ reports. Private religious activities are strictly forbidden by the government, making it difficult to assess the extent and number of underground churches.
Defectors have shared their experiences, revealing that the North Korean government encourages citizens to report any unauthorized religious activities or the possession of religious materials such as Bibles. Christians often practice their faith in secret, fearing repercussions from the government and their own communities.
In October 2021, Korea Future published a report based on interviews with 244 victims of religious freedom abuses, ranging from two-year-old children to individuals in their eighties. Disturbingly, more than 70 percent of the victims were women and girls. The government charged individuals with various offenses, including engaging in religious practices, possessing religious items, and sharing religious beliefs.
These charges resulted in severe consequences, including arrest, detention, forced labor, torture, denial of a fair trial, public execution, and even sexual violence. The report highlights specific incidents, such as the imprisonment of an entire family in 2009 for their religious practices and Bible possession, including the unjust sentencing of a two-year-old child to life imprisonment.
Additionally, the report details an alarming incident in which a man was viciously beaten by guards for praying, as well as the execution of a Korean Worker’s Party member found with a Bible, witnessed by thousands of people at an airfield.
Christians in North Korea face unimaginable hardships in prison camps, enduring extreme malnutrition, consumption of contaminated food, verbal and physical abuse, and even execution. Open Doors USA, an NGO, aptly describes life for Christians in North Korea as a “constant cauldron of pressure,” where danger and vulnerability are ever-present.
It is essential to shed light on these deeply troubling human rights abuses and work towards a world where freedom of religion and belief is respected and upheld for all individuals, regardless of their faith or nationality.