China Defends North Korea on Human Rights Track Record

D-Bo , March 18, 2015, 9:18 a.m.

China on Tuesday urged the world to take what it calls "an objective and fair" attitude toward North Korea's human rights record, again defending its traditional ally against growing international criticism over the North's abysmal human rights situation.

International pressure has been mounting on North Korea since a groundbreaking U.N. inquiry detailed systematic, widespread and gross human rights abuses in the reclusive regime. The U.N. Security Council took up the North's human rights record as one of its standing agenda items in December, putting more pressure on the legitimacy of the Pyongyang regime.

"The Chinese side always maintains that differences in the field of human rights should be resolved through constructive dialogue and cooperation, based on mutual respect and equality," Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei told a regular press briefing.

"We hope that the international community will take an objective and fair look at the human rights situation in North Korea and pay more attention to difficulties and challenges faced by North Korea in its economic and social development," Hong said.

North Korea has strongly protested against the U.N. Commission of Inquiry report, rejecting accusations of human rights abuses as evidence of hostile U.S. policy toward the isolated regime.

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