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North Korea: Witness to Transformation

Event: North Korea Freedom Week 2013 Update

by | March 30th, 2013 | 07:00 am
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We pass along the following information from our friends at the North Korea Freedom Coalition.  Have a look at the upcoming events and attend if you are able.

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Please see below some upcoming events regarding North Korea’s freedom and human rights, but first a special request regarding this year’s North Korea Freedom Week 2013: We hope that everyone will take part in the 10th annual North Korea Freedom Week wherever you are in the world.  While the major events of the week will once again be in Seoul this year, we hope that events will occur simultaneously during that week to promote the freedom, human rights and dignity of the North Korean people.  For example, here in the Washington, D.C. area a group of professional opera singers – SALT (Sharing, Aiding, Loving, Together): Concerts for a Cause — will host a special concert on April 28, the 10th anniversary of the very first North Korea Freedom Day.

In particular, please consider the date of Thursday, May 2, 2013 as that will be a Worldwide Awareness Day for North Korean Refugees to help raise public awareness of the ongoing crisis facing North Koreans in China. As you know, the situation facing North Korean refugees is worse than ever before since Kim Jong Un became dictator.   China’s assistance to the North Korean regime in hunting down and arresting North Koreans and those who try to assist them, and their collusion with the regime in illegally repatriating them back to North Korea has led to a substantial drop in the number of North Koreans being able to escape to freedom in South Korea and other countries.  Now that Xi Jinping has assumed the presidency of China and China has shown its increasing displeasure with the regime, this peaceful campaign will focus on a direct appeal to Xi Jinping to reverse China’s repatriation policy citing all the positive reasons why this would also be in China’s best interest.  We hope that free people around the world will stand with us – deliver petitions and letters to the Chinese consulates and embassies appealing to President Xi, but also host film screenings and other events to raise awareness about the cruel treatment of escaping North Koreans by the government of China.   We are recruiting city and county coordinators now!  If you can plan an activity and action in your city, please let us know at skswm@aol.com.

North Korea Freedom Coalition will be meeting next Thursday, March 21:  The next meeting of the North Korea Freedom Coalition will be next week and feature North Korean defector Kim Cheol Woong visiting the USA for several events (see below) as a special guest of the Castleton Foundation and North Koreans in the US.   We will have a report on recent events held in Illinois sponsored by the Jubilee Unification Prayer movement and events organized by activists Roxann Moss, Bok Lee, Connie Chang and Andrew Hong; the latest news from Geneva and the Human Rights Council; and an update from a visiting scholar on rising tensions on the Korean peninsula.  If you are not a member yet and want to join NKFC, visit http://www.nkfreedom.org/

A Time to Break Silence: Concert on Art, Freedom and North Korea in Castleton, Virginia, March 23, 7 pm: Orson Maazel and opera singer Davone Tines are organizing this special event at renowned classical music conducter Maestor Lorin Maazel’s own theater in Castleton, Virginia (663 Castleton View Road, Castleton, VA, 22716.) The concert will explore the connections between art and human rights and include performances by North Korean defector pianist Kim Cheol Woong and musicians from The Juilliard School and the Castleton Festival Chamber Players. Orson describes it best: “This is a unique concert event that will demonstrate the powerful and vital human connections between art and freedom.”   More information and a full description of the event can be found here: https://castletonfestival.secure.force.com/ticket#details_a0JG000000GWZBdMAP

A Night of Hope: MaJoong Concert for North Korean Refugees featuring Kim Cheol Woong and other North and South Korean musicians at Pilgrim Church in Burke, Virginia, March 24, at 6 pm.  North Koreans in the USA (NKUS) are hosting this concert specifically to help in the rescue of the nephews of a North Korean who has resettled in the United States.  For more information contact NKUS at nkusmember1@gmail.com or Hope Kim at  somhangk@gmail.com

Human Rights in Kim Jong Un’s North Korea: Is Progress Possible? at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy in Medford/Somerville, MA on April 2, 2-7 pm.  The Committee for Human Rights in North Korea, the Lantos Foundation for Human Rights and Justice, and the Fletcher School for Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University will host this conference with a distinguished line up of scholars and human rights experts.  For more infromation contact HRNK executive director, Greg Scarlatoiu
at executive.director@hrnk.org