Skip to comments.Anglican Group Charged With Turning Blind Eye to Human Rights Abuses
Posted on 07/09/2005 7:00:35 PM PDT by sionnsar
(AgapePress) - A council representing more than 70 million Anglicans worldwide is being accused of ignoring North Korean human rights abuses. The International Anglican Consultative Council recently passed a resolution that called for Korean reunification and rebuked the U.S. for "contemplating the use of military force" against North Korea.
Faith McDonnell is director of the Religious Liberty Program for the Washington-based Institute on Religion and Democracy (IRD). She is troubled that the International Anglican Consultative Council's resolution failed to address the oppressive policies of North Korean dictator Kim Jong Il.
McDonnell says evidence of these oppressive policies exists, including "satellite photographs of strings of prison labor camps where people are kept for such offenses as reading a foreign newspaper or not having your picture of Kim Jong Il on your wall in your house." People are put in these labor camps for life, she asserts, "and for most people this is a death sentence, because conditions in the camps are so terrible."
But according to the IRD spokeswoman, the Council's resolution completely ignored the evidence of human rights abuses being perpetrated by Kim Jong Il's Stalinist regime. "The worst problem with the resolution," she adds, "is what it doesn't say when [the Anglican leaders] had an opportunity to talk about the human rights violations and the egregious conditions in North Korea."
Instead, McDonnell points out, the International Anglican Consultative Council "used this opportunity to urge reunification -- which isn't even possible at this point -- and to really chastise the United States for wanting to defend itself against North Korean aggression."
The IRD has documented a growing trend among mainline Protestant church leaders to condemn the U.S. and Israel for alleged human rights abuses, while at the same time ignoring egregious abuses taking place in countries like North Korea, China, Cuba, Saudi Arabia, and other Arab dictatorships. Nevertheless, McDonnell says the Institute will be asking individual Anglican provinces to speak out for freedom in North Korea.
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