An NGO researching atrocities under the Kim John Un regime has confirmed that public executions still happen in North Korea and how these are intended to instill fear of the North Korean government, and to be witnessed by as many people as possible.
The Transitional Justice Working Group‘s executive director Hubert Youngwhan Lee told Sky News: “There are certain types of locations that are frequently used for the public killings. The most commonly used locations are river banks, under bridges, markets, or even on school grounds, or public stadiums.”
Asked to clarify whether school grounds were being used for public executions, he replied: “Yes, school grounds, because North Korea uses this as a tool for instilling public fear of being punished by their government.”
He said public killings continue to be carried out under Mr Kim’s leadership, with testimony as recently as 2015, three years into his rule.
His colleague, researcher Sehyek Oh, who is from North Korea, has carried out 375 interviews so far with fellow defectors, including former officials, as they gather evidence ultimately intended to be used in court, to bring those responsible to justice.