[LETTERS TO THE EDITOR]No friend of rights

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[LETTERS TO THE EDITOR]No friend of rights

The seventh International Conference for National Human Rights opened in Seoul this week. One could feel elated to have the conference in Seoul to highlight the massive, systematic, human rights abuses happening just 40 kilometers from possibly the worst human rights violating country, North Korea.
Unsurprisingly though, the South Korean government’s policy of (wanting to) see and hear no evil about the abuses in the North makes persons with complaints about North Korean human rights unwelcome.
In a further farce, President Roh Moo-hyun was invited to speak. His administration’s policy of silencing the lucky few North Korean refugees who make it to South Korea, the total neglect of assistance to North Koreans in China avoiding capture and the absolute disinclination to even bring up the subject of those suffering in concentration camps in North Korea makes his presence at the conference bewildering.
Perhaps the organizers should have extended an invitation to Mullah Omar of the Taliban to give a speech on ‘The Empowerment of Women’.

by Brendan Brown
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