Former High Court judge Michael Kirby attracts ire of North Korea
Michael Kirby has attracted the ire of North Korean state media when it launched a homophobic attack slamming the former High Court judge as a “disgusting old lecher with a 40-odd-year-long career of homosexuality”.
The attack comes in the wake of Kirby’s recommendation to the United Nations last week to refer North Korea to the International Criminal Court to face justice for its human rights record.
As the chairperson of a year-long UN inquiry into human rights abuses in North Korea, Kirby told the UN Security Council that North Korean government officials and security chiefs should be tried for human rights violations that amounted to war crimes and crimes against humanity.
The Korea Central News Agency – the state news agency of North Korea – then responded with a stinging personal attack on Kirby, taking aim at his sexuality.
“It is ridiculous for such gay to sponsor dealing with others’ human rights issue,” KCNA said.
KCNA claimed Kirby falsified the inquiry’s report.
At the meeting with the 15-member UN Security Council earlier this month where Kirby presented his findings, Kirby said: "In a week of many grave human rights matters occupying the attention of the members of this council, we dare say that the case of human rights in the DPRK (Democratic People Republic of Korea) exceeds all others in duration, intensity and horror”.
“Only the Security Council can set in train immediate, impartial and just action to secure accountability, fulfil the responsibility to protect, put human rights right and stop grave human rights violations from undermining peace and security,” Kirby said.