It’s been revealed a toddler was sentenced to life in a prison camp in North Korea because the child’s parents illegally possessed a Bible.
Those caught with a Bible in the highly secretive country often face the death penalty.
Their families, including children, are sent to camps for life.
As many as 70,000 Christians are imprisoned in North Korea, according to the latest International Religious Freedom Report by the US State Department.
It wrote that the North Korean government has continued to “execute, torture, arrest and physically abuse people for their religious activities.”
The report highlighted how in 2009, an entire family, including a two-year-old, was sentenced to life in a camp for possessing a Bible.
“The right to freedom of thought, conscience, and religion in North Korea continues to be denied, with no alternative belief systems tolerated by the authorities,” United Nations Secretary General António Guterres reported last July.
Mr. Guterres wrote how the situation in North Korea has not changed since a 2014 human rights report found that authorities “almost completely denied the rights to freedom of thought, conscience and religion,” and that the government frequently violated human rights that constituted crimes against humanity.
The New York Post reports a few officially registered churches are allowed in North Korea.
They operate under strict state control and function mainly as showpieces for foreign tourists.