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Testimony

North Korea and the Right to Food

by Marcus Noland, Peterson Institute for International Economics

Testimony before the United Nations' Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea Public Hearings
October 30, 2013


The right to food is recognized in article 25 of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights and article 11 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR). It has undergone a steady elaboration, most notably in the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights General Comment 12 of 1999 and subsequent documents.

The simplest definition, contained in paragraph 6 of General Comment 12, is that "the right to adequate food is realized when every man, woman and child, alone and in community with others, has physical and economic access at all times to adequate food or means for its procurement."

This document goes on to elaborate a number of state obligations including:

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RELATED LINKS

Book: Witness to Transformation: Refugee Insights into North Korea January 2011

Peterson Perspective: North Korea's Immunity to Outside Pressure: Part I December 12, 2012

Policy Brief 10-1: The Winter of Their Discontent: Pyongyang Attacks the Market January 2010

Working Paper 10-2: Economic Crime and Punishment in North Korea March 2010

Paper: FTAs and the Future of US-Korean Trade Relations November 2009

Paper: Implementing the KORUS FTA: Key Challenges and Policy Proposals February 2008

Policy Brief 08-6: North Korea on the Precipice of Famine May 2008

Policy Brief 07-7: The Korea-US Free Trade Agreement: A Summary Assessment August 2007

Policy Brief 06-4: Negotiating the Korea–United States Free Trade Agreement June 2006

Working Paper 07-7: North Korea’s External Economic Relations August 2007

Book: Avoiding the Apocalypse: The Future of the Two Koreas June 2000

Book: Free Trade Between Korea and the United States? April 2001

Working Paper 08-4: Migration Experiences of North Korean Refugees: Survey Evidence from China March 2008