UNITED NATIONS (AP) — North Korea on Friday rejected a U.N. commission’s report that it committed crimes against humanity, calling that an “extremely dangerous” political provocation.
In a statement from Pyongyang, an unnamed North Korean Foreign Ministry spokesman also claimed that the panel was U.S.-orchestrated and that Washington should mind its own business.
The statement, carried by North Korea’s official Korean Central News Agency, was in response to a hard-hitting report issued Monday by the three-member U.N. commission of inquiry that recommended a referral of its findings to the U.N. Security Council and the International Criminal Court.
“This is an extremely dangerous politically-motivated provocation aimed to tarnish the image of the dignified DPRK and ramp up pressure on it in a bid to bring down its social system,” said the statement, referring to the North by the initials of its formal name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.
The commission, chaired by a retired Australian judge, was established by the U.N. top human rights body. It conducted a yearlong investigation but was unable to visit North Korea.
The panel took the unusual step in a U.N. report of directly implicating a nation’s leader. It warned North Korea’s Kim Jong Un that he may be held accountable for orchestrating widespread crimes against civilians, ranging from systematic executions to torture, rape and mass starvation.
In its statement, North Korea said its people enjoy “genuine rights,” and described the report as “sheer lies” cooked up by “hostile forces,” defectors and criminals.
The statement said the U.S. itself should be brought to an international human rights tribunal “as it killed innocent people in various parts of the world through aggression and intervention.”