Our court ruled that the North Korean government and Chairman Kim Jong-un should pay alimony to North Korean military prisoners who were caught by the North Korean army during the Korean War. It is the first time that the court has acknowledged North Korea's liability for damages, but further lawsuits are likely to follow.
Reporter Im Chan-jong.
Two Korean prisoners of war, including Han Mo, who fled in 2001 after becoming a prisoner in the Korean War, filed a lawsuit in 2016 against North Korea and Kim Jong-un.
He said he was forced to pay for 600 million won as alimony, saying that he was forced to labor without repatriating them to Korea.
After four years of lawsuits, the Seoul Central District Court ruled that the defendants paid 21 million won each to the two.
This was the first time the courts recognized the liability for damages against North Korea and Kim Jong-un's illegal activities.
[Kim Hyun Lawyer/ Plaintiff's Litigation Agent: Since Kim Il Sung is dead, the responsibility is inherited by Kim Jong Il, and Kim Jong Il's responsibility is also inherited by Kim Jong Eun. That's why the calculated amount (manuscript) comes in at 21 million won each.] The
Tribunal accepted the plaintiff's claim that North Korea should be regarded as a special-purpose organization for which Korean jurisdiction is recognized, not a foreign government.
It also accepted claims that it violated the Geneva Conventions on the Repatriation of Prisoners and the Treatment of Prisoners of War.
The plaintiff's plan is to secure alimony from the royalties paid to the North and South Korea by the Korea Foundation for Economic and Cultural Cooperation.
It is a copyright fee for Chosun Central TV video, etc., and is currently estimated at 2 billion won.
Mulmancho, the division that supported the lawsuit, said it would help to file a lawsuit against about 20 survivors and 50 survivors who died.
(Video coverage: Doowon Yang, Video editing: Seunghee Lee)
"Kim Jong-un, please pay alimony to the prisoners of war"... Reimbursement possible?
During the Korean War, our court ruled that the North Korean government and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un should pay alimony to North Korean prisoners of war who were caught by the North Korean army and then defected. It is the first time that the court has acknowledged North Korea's liability for damages, but further lawsuits are likely to follow.