Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
December 2, Juche 109 (2020)
It is centuries-old desire and ardent wishes of the humankind to retain their dignity as independent human beings and fully enjoy genuine life in a world free from any domination and subordination.
Hence in December 1949, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) adopted the Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others and designated December 2 as “International Day for the Abolition of Slavery.”
Many years have passed since, yet the remnants of colonial societies which had long gone away at the dawn of human history are still around, resulting in incessant criminal acts of violating and obliterating human dignity and triggering grave concerns and unrest throughout the world.
At the commemorative event of the “Centennial Founding Anniversary of the International Labor Organization” held at the UN Headquarters in April 2019, the President of UNGA pointed out that globally, over 40 million are forced into the contemporary forms of slavery and more than 80 million reduced to the victims of trans-Atlantic slave trade. And the Executive Director of the Governing Body of the International Labor Organization (ILO) highlighted that forced labour and child labour are not yet eradicated and illegal slave trade continues in the African region and other conflict areas and countries.
At a high-level meeting devoted to the prevention of trafficking in persons held at the UN Headquarters a few years ago, the UN Secretary-General said that the international society should unite to overcome the despicable criminal acts of trafficking in persons, referring to the situation where the yearly multiplying refugees were becoming the targets of trafficking.
Criminals who foster and implement the contemporary forms of slave trade are stretching their tentacles particularly into the countries where sovereignty is violated and social chaos and disorder are widespread, and they are making profiteering by selling a large number of women and children all over the world by resorting to all sorts of fraud, swindling, abduction and violence.
Many young women who should spend their flowery youth in a worthwhile way are reduced to prostitutes in a moment, and children who are not yet fully grown are either working like breathing machines or driven into the bloody battles, wearing loose helmets. What do these tragic scenes teach us?
It gives a serious lesson that people of any country are doomed to the contemporary forms of slavery if they are deprived of the dignity and sovereignty of the country.
Apparently, it is disgrace and misery of the humankind that in the modern international society, the miserable and decadent trend is still rife whereby human beings are treated as commodities to be sold for money and forced into all forms of abuses and humiliation. This is one of the most urgent tasks to be tackled by all countries around the world in concerted efforts.
The international society should strengthen the enforcement of international legal instruments for smashing the contemporary forms of slavery and all other inhumane criminal acts which are ruthlessly violating the sovereign rights and dignity of people and hampering social progress and development of human civilization. And all countries and nations should together join in the international efforts for ensuring genuine international justice and human rights.