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Additional info for Encyclopedia of Human Rights

Sample text

Serious human rights violations include arbitrary arrest and detention, prolonged pretrial detention, absence of accountability, lack of due process, and lengthy trial delays. Police routinely detain persons of The Human Rights Encyclopedia African descent on suspicion of having committed crimes simply because of the color of their skin. Despite the constitutional provision for an independent judiciary, in practice the judicial system is inefficient, often corrupt, and easily manipulated by the executive branch.

Despite growing economic hardships, North Korea continues to devote a significant portion of its scarce resources to the military, and it currently has the fourth largest army in the world. North Korea is a highly centralized communist state controlled by the Korean Workers’ Party (KWP). Kim Jong Il, who succeeded his father, Kim Il Sung, after his death in 1994, holds supreme power. 412 North Korea The regime justifies its dictatorship with juche, a mystical concept in which the collective will of the people is projected into a supreme leader, who incarnates the state’s and the society’s needs.

The government does not seem to have been responsive to many of these complaints. The government generally protects the rights of children, making available free education to all children. Child abuse occurs, but there is no societal pattern of child abuse. The practice of female genital mutilation still occurs in some isolated areas. Female genital mutilation is damaging to both the physical and mental health of those who are forced to undergo the procedure. It is almost universally condemned as a human rights crime.

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