Press release

Freedom House Welcomes Senate Passage of North Korea Sanctions

The United States Senate held a 96-to-0 vote to impose sanctions on North Korea, approving the North Korea Sanctions and Policy Enhancement Act. 


In response to the U.S. Senate’s 96-to-0 vote to impose sanctions on North Korea, Freedom House issues the following statement:

“Sanctions are a necessary response both to the military threat posed by Kim Jong-un’s regime and its brutal treatment of the North Korean people,” said Lisa Dickieson, senior vice president for international programs. “The least the United States should do is impose targeted sanctions on the regime’s perpetrators of crimes against humanity, as documented in 2014 by the UN Commission of Inquiry. We look forward to these sanctions being approved by the House, which has tackled the North Korea human rights calamity under the leadership of Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA) and others.”

The North Korea Sanctions and Policy Enhancement Act would impose visa bans, asset seizures, and denial of U.S. government contracts on individuals involved in proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, sales of luxury goods to North Korea, and human rights abuses, and would allow the President to sanction individuals who facilitate the transfer of financial assets to the North Korean regime. The bill also includes a requirement for the Administration to develop a strategy to promote international engagement on North Korea human rights-related issues, including forced labor and repatriation.

North Korea is rated Not Free in Freedom in the World 2016, and Not Free in Freedom of the Press 2015