Shin-wha Lee, the Ambassador for International Cooperation on North Korean Human Rights, assesses the Yoon government’s North Korea policy as a valid approach to establish a virtuous cycle and mutual complementarity between “peace” and “freedom,” which are the core tenets of Yoon’s foreign policy. Highlighting that South Korea’s North Korean Human Rights Act provides meaningful platforms to openly discuss and hold the violator accountable, Lee urges the Yoon government to build on existing reports and multilateral initiatives to improve the North Korean human rights conditions. Furthermore, Lee argues that human rights and denuclearization must be linked in order to provide opportunity for North Korea to be accepted as a “normal state,” ensure effective verification during the potential denuclearization process, and offer the regime an economic incentive.


Note: The publication mentioned from 04:12~04:38 of the interview refers to the special report released by KINU, titled "Is North Korean Human Rights Improving?(김정은시대 북한인권은 변화하고 있는가?)." While this report had not been released during the time of the webinar in early June, it was published recently on July 24, 2023. To read the report, please follow the link.



Shin-wha Lee is the Ambassador for International Cooperation on North Korean Human Rights and Professor of Department of Political Science and International Relations at Korea University.



Typeset by Jisoo Park , Research Associate
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