Christian families in North Korea who are caught with a Bible face the death penalty. Even their families, including children, are sentenced to life imprisonment. A US State Department report has revealed these alarming findings.
The 2022 US State Department International Religious Freedom Report provides estimated figures on such incidents, stating that approximately 70,000 Christians, as well as individuals from other faiths, are imprisoned in North Korea.
Gross violation of human rights
The family of the 2-year-old child was initially arrested for their religious practices and possession of a Bible. In 2009, both the baby and the parents were sentenced to life in a political prison camp. The report documents the suffering of Christians detained in these camps, where they endure various forms of physical torture and mistreatment. Furthermore, the report uncovers the Ministry of State Security's involvement in the documented human rights abuses against Christians and Shamanic adherents.
Churches serve as mere showpieces for foreigners
According to the report, "A small number of officially registered religious institutions, including churches, existed in the country, particularly in Pyongyang. However, visitors reported that they operate under strict state control and primarily serve as showcases for foreigners."