Conference Hears Testimony of Forced Abortion In North Korea

The 6th International Conference on North Korean Human Rights and Refugees heard testimony in February about alleged forced abortions and infanticide in North Korean prison camps.

Using the alias Park Sun-ja, a 28-year-old defector from North Korea testified that she witnessed both infanticide and forced abortion at Shinuiju Provincial Detention Camp where she had been held for two months in 2000 after having been caught after having crossed into China.

Sun-ja testified that,

I heard the cries of both mother and child through the curtain (at a hospital). And through the partially open curtain, I witnessed the nurse covering the infant’s face with a wet towel on a table, suffocating it. The baby stopped crying about ten minutes later.

Sun-ja testifed that injections to induce miscarriage among pregnant women at the camp were routine.

She also testified to being abused and witnessing abuse by guards at the camp, including,

Severe beatings through the use of sticks, fists (punching), and feet (kicking) were standard practice. Cells were infested with insects, fleas, lice, and other parasites. It was disgusting.

Sun-ja’s testimony obviously needs to be taken with some bit of skepticism given that it was given pseudonymously, but given the immense secrecy in North Korea and other atrocities committed by the regime that we do know about, what she describe is certainly plausible.


N.K. defector claimed forced abortions. The Korea Herald, February 7, 2005.

Leave a Reply