North Korea threatened the U.S. with military action Thursday after the State Department exposed details of sex trafficking in the country.
The North Korean foreign ministry called a June U.S. State Department report slanderous.
“If anyone dares to trample over our sovereignty and the right to existence, we will never hesitate to pull a muscle-flexing trigger in order to defend ourselves,” the foreign ministry said, according to U.S. News & World Report. (RELATED: North Korea Issues Blunt Statement On Denuclearization)
The State Department’s human trafficking report released on June 20 ranks North Korea as a “Tier 3” country along with China and various African and Middle Eastern nations. Tier 3 is the category the State Department says warrants the most concern.
“The Government of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK or North Korea) does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is not making significant efforts to do so,” the trafficking report said.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo recommended Sunday that North Korea remain under 80% sanctions — a decision not highly regarded by Kim Jong Un, the North Korean dictator, U.S. News reported.
The State Department also alleges government officials are part of sex exploitation in the dictatorship.
“North Koreans, including potential trafficking victims, forcibly returned by Chinese authorities were sent to interrogation centers, where the government subjected them to forced labor, torture, forced abortions, and sexual abuse by prison guards and were potentially sent on to prison camps,” the trafficking report details.
“Many of the North Korean refugees and asylum seekers living illegally in China are particularly vulnerable to trafficking, and traffickers lure, drug, detain, or kidnap some North Korean women upon their arrival,” the State Department adds.
The report details a web of sex abuse that bounces between the two Communist nations and often results in forced marriages and prostitution among other abuses.
The oppressive nation also received failing scores in a 2018 State Department religious liberty report. Almost all religious expression is prohibited in the nation, according to the report.
U.S. President Donald Trump headed to the G20 summit Thursday in Japan and will be reportedly speaking with North Korea and China, among others.
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