According to an investigation by London-based rights group Korea Future Initiative, an international criminal network is selling “tens of thousands” of North Korean women into sex slavery.
Or, in the words of the report:
[They’re] sold into the sex trade in China where they are forced to endure systemic rape, sexual slavery and cybersex trafficking.
The Initiative’s site claims the ladies are being subjected to prostitution, sex trafficking, sex abuse, and forced marriage in the Land of the Rising Sun.
More from KFI:
Pushed from their homeland by a patriarchal regime that survives through the imposition of tyranny, poverty, and oppression, North Korean women and girls are passed through the hands of traffickers, brokers, and criminal organisations before being pulled into China’s sex trade, where they are exploited and used by men until their bodies are depleted.
The probe’s broken down the hundred-million-dollar horror into 4 components:
First, a set of factors that leave North Korean women and girls uniquely vulnerable to sex trafficking and the sex trade. Second, a demand for sex slaves in China that is fuelling the exploitation and abuse of North Korean women and girls. Third, a set of pathways that push victims into organised prostitution, cybersex, and forced marriages. Fourth, a complex and inter-connected network of criminality that accrues an estimated $105,000,000 United States Dollars annually from the sale of female North Korean bodies.
The report concludes with a call to arms and a condemnation — not only of both countries, but of the international community that should be aware of the issue and already fighting against it:
At a time when significant global capital is invested in China and, more recently, political capital expended on North Korea, it is a damning indictment that North Korean women and girls are left languishing in the sex trade. Condemnation is insufficient. Only tangible acts can dismantle China’s sex trade, confront a North Korean regime that abhors women, and rescue sex slaves scattered across brothels, remote townships, and cybersex dens in mainland China. That Korea Future Initiative — a small nongovernmental organisation that receives no funding or support from governments, human rights institutions, or grant-giving bodies — was able to uncover abuses largely overlooked by the international community should act as an incentive to all.
How well-off were the women before they left North Korea? The East Asian country’s not exactly known for its utopian conditions.
As noted by The Daily Wire:
The hermit kingdom of North Korea is the world’s last truly Stalinist, gulag state. In 2017, NBC News described a report by the International Bar Association War Crimes Committee. As NBC News chillingly reported, “Thomas Buergenthal — a renowned judge on the committee and a survivor of Auschwitz — told The Washington Post that North Korea’s gulags ‘are as terrible, or even worse’ than the Nazi camps he experienced as a child.”
The KFI article closes with a poignant question:
With knowledge of great wrongs comes responsibilities. The question remains of who will champion North Korean human rights?
Good question — who will? But also, who can?
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