N. Korea slams U.N. Security Council for meeting on human rights

North Korea on Sunday slammed the U.N. Security Council for holding a meeting on Pyongyang's human rights situation for the third straight year.

In an interview carried by the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), a spokesman for the North's foreign ministry condemned the U.N. meeting as "a hostile act."

The spokesman added the United States, by "unlawfully" placing the North Korean human rights issue on the agenda, has insulted other U.N. member nations.

During Friday's meeting held by the U.N. Security Council, its members condemned North Korea's human rights abuses. It marked the third consecutive year in which the top global security body discussed the matter as an official agenda item.

The proposal for this year's meeting was passed by a 9-5 vote, with the United States, Britain, France, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Spain, Ukraine and Uruguay voting for the talks. China, Russia, Venezuela, Egypt and Angola voted against it.

"The fact that several members were opposed to the meeting reflects the stance of many developing countries that reject discussing human rights at the U.N. Security Council," the foreign ministry spokesman said. "The U.N. has a separate Human Rights Council, but the U.S. still managed to drag our human rights issue to the Security Council because that council reigns above the U.N. Charter and international law."

North Korea has long been labeled as one of the worst human rights violators. It does not tolerate dissent, holds hundreds of thousands of people in political prison camps, and keeps tight control over outside information.

Pyongyang has bristled at such criticism, calling it a U.S.-led attempt to topple its regime.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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