Yeonmi Park

Country representing

Democratic People's Republic of Korea

Languages

Korean
English

Education

  • Dongguk University, Police administration.

Current organisation

New Focus

Skills and Expertise

Human rights

Areas of interest

Education
Human Rights
Media

Website & Social Links

I am passionate about

 

I am passionate about the human rights of North Koreans who are oppressed by the North Korean regime and victimized further when they manage to escape to China.

I was born in Hyesan, Yanggang Province, North Korea. During my childhood, I lived a rich lifestyle by North Korean standards, including a few years in luxurious Pyongyang. I eventually had to flee with my family to China after my father was charged with engaging in illegal business activities. I eventually escaped to Mongolia, following a compass and the Big Dipper to freedom. From there, after being jailed for three months, I was allowed to move to South Korea.

Even though I have escaped, I can’t forget about North Koreans who are still imprisoned by the regime in North Korea and are fleeing for their lives in China. In particular, many women are coerced into the sex industry, sold to the highest bidders as wives, or sexually abused by men who prey upon North Korean women fearful of being returned to North Korea.

People who don’t know about this tragedy need to be informed. Human rights activists and others who are involved need to collaborate more strategically to find ways to help rescue North Koreans. We all have a role in making this happen. I see myself as a messenger, witness and human rights activist who can speak out for North Koreans who are voiceless and powerless.

I am so thankful for those who have already gotten involved. I hope we can work together to make a difference in the lives of people who need help and hope.

Actions

19th century American abolitionist Frederick Douglass once wrote, “I would unite with anybody to do right and with nobody to do wrong.” I am working with a number of organizations, have appeared on a number of TV shows, radio, documentaries and given many newspaper interviews this year to raise awareness about the human rights tragedy in North Korea.

I'm a regular guest on "I’m on My Way To Meet You," a television program featuring North Korean women that attempts to bridge the gap between North and South Koreans. 

I'm a reporter for New Focus International, an organization that uses its contacts inside North Korea to inform the world about the reality of North Korea. 

I regularly collaborate with LiNK (Liberty In North Korea) to inform young people about North Korean human rights issues. 

I'm a Media Fellow at Freedom Factory Co. Ltd., in Seoul, with which I co-host "North Korea Today, featuring Casey Lartigue and Yeonmi Park."

I'm the Ambassador of Teach North Korean Refugees, where I raise awareness about challenges for North Korean refugees struggling to acquire job skills. 

I'm also working with "Students For Liberty" and "Young Voices Advocates" to spread ideas about liberty.