On Thursday, December 9, 2021, Women Cross DMZ and Korea Peace Now! hosted a panel discussion titled “Peace and Human Rights in North Korea: An Argument For Ending the War.” This event grappled with the intersection of human rights and peace in the context of US-North Korea relations and the role of the unended Korean War.
The event featured introductory remarks from Sr. Tomás Ojea Quintana, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in North Korea. Women Cross DMZ Executive Director Christine Ahn facilitated the panel discussion with Elizabeth Beavers, a national security and human rights attorney and advocate, and Su-mi Jeon, a South Korean human rights lawyer. The webinar included audience Q&A.
After nearly 70 years, the Korean War still has not officially ended. But when discussions of a peace agreement to end the war arise, a key question often emerges: but what about human rights? In this event, the speakers reflected on this question and discussed their perspectives on how peace and human rights can reinforce one another when it comes to North Korea.
This critical conversation took place the same week as International Human Rights Day, and served as an important opportunity to mark the day by discussing how to change the failed status quo on the Korean Peninsula.