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North Korea: Religious Freedom

Question for Foreign and Commonwealth Office

UIN 122063, tabled on 10 January 2018

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what information his Department holds on the degree of religious freedom in North Korea, and what steps he is taking to promote and protect the right to freedom of religion and belief in that country.

Answered on

15 January 2018

​We are aware of reports, including the UN Commission of Inquiry report (2014), that people in North Korea who are involved in religion (outside of state-controlled organisations), face severe punishment for practising their beliefs, including summary executions, torture, lack of judicial process and forced labour. Officially recognised places of worship are effectively under state control. Given the closed nature of the regime it is difficult to verify reports.

We shall continue to work bilaterally and with partners in international fora, such as in the UN General Assembly and Human Rights Council, to raise our concerns on human rights issues with the DPRK government at every opportunity. We continue to urge the DPRK to uphold its human rights obligations and engage substantively with the international community on this issue.

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