Human rights groups are reporting on new grim statistics from North Korea and its treatment of religious minorities, including Christians, revealing that more than 75 percent of those subjected to torture, imprisonment, and other punishments do not survive.
UPI reported on statistics from the Database Center for North Korean Human Rights, a South Korean nonprofit organization, which are based on the testimonies of defectors, identifying over 65,000 cases of religious persecution.
International Christian Concern, Open Doors USA, and Christian Solidarity Worldwide are some of the persecution watchdog groups that have documented the horrific treatment of minorities in North Korea.
CSW’s report released in September found close to 99 percent of 11,370 defectors in the study confirmed that there is no religious freedom under the government of Kim Jong-un. It also noted that the North Korean government tortures, mutilates, and kills Christians. The report added that some of the documented incidents against believers include “being hung on a cross over a fire, crushed under a steamroller, herded off bridges, and trampled underfoot.”
The interviews also reveal less than 23 percent of victims of religious persecution survive their punishment, according to defectors’ testimonies.
“A policy of guilt by association applies, meaning that the relatives of Christians are also detained regardless of whether they share the Christian belief. Even North Koreans who have escaped to China, and who are or become Christians, are often repatriated and subsequently imprisoned in a political prison camp,” CSW noted.
As the watchdog group also explained, religious belief is seen as a major threat to North Korea’s leadership, with Christians often accused of being imperialists seeking to undermine the rule of the ‘supreme leader,’ as Kim Jong-un is known.
[The Christian Post]