Camps in North Korea - level 3

Camps in North Korea - level 3

11-12-2013 06:00

Amnesty International has released new satellite images of two political prison camps in North Korea.

From above, they say, some of the camps have got even larger but on the ground the full extent of the damage remains unclear. It’s thought that up to 200,000 prisoners, including children, are being tortured and executed.

The human rights group is calling on the North Korean government to close down camps Kwanliso 15 and Kwanliso 16. It has passed on its latest evidence to the UN, who’s investigating human rights abuse in the country.

A former prison camp official only known as Mr. Lee told of the horror that goes on.

“The purpose of prison camps is to oppress, degrade and violate the inmates for as long as they are alive.”

Although there’s no way of confirming the number of prisoners, Amnesty say the problem is getting worse as the biggest camp, Kwanliso 16, now stretches 560 square kilometres, the size of Washington DC.

“The political prison camps in North Korea are a part, a vital part, of this vast infrastructure of repression that the North Korean government has to maintain its control over its population. As far as we know, there are four political prison camps in remote areas, they’re vast. For instance our satellite images show the largest political prison camp is about 560 square kilometres.”

North Korea denies the camps exist.

Difficult words: oppress (to treat people cruelly), degrade (to treat someone without respect), violate (fail to respect), inmate (person who lives in a prison), vital (absolutely necessary), repression (bringing people under control by force), vast (very great), instance (example).

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