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Book talk: The North Korean Conundrum: Balancing Human Rights and Nuclear Security

Wednesday, December 8, 2021   09:30

  • Minjung Kim (Associate Executive Director, Save North Korea (SNK))
  • Sean King (Sr. Vice President, Park Strategies LLC and former Senior Advisor for Asia in the U.S. & Foreign Commercial Service at the United States Department of Commerce)


The North Korean regime is consistently identified as one of the world’s worst human rights abusers. However, the issue of human rights in North Korea is a complex one, intertwined with issues like life in the North Korean police state, inter-Korean relations, denuclearization, access to information in the North, and international cooperation, to name a few.

Minjung Kim and Sean King will discuss aspects of this edited volume and answer questions from the audience.   Minjung Kim will focus on her chapter, which deals with “Efforts to Reach North Koreans by South Korean NGOs: then, now, and challenges” and Sean King on his chapter, “Germany’s Lessons for Korea.”  They will also address other issues raised in the book.

Webinar Access

Please email to icas@tuj.temple.edu RSVP.
RSVP is not required but helpful for organizers.

Join with the following link:
Meeting ID: 941 8042 0422

Date & Time:
Wednesday, December 8, 2021   09:30
Robert Dujarric, ICAS Co-Director
Registration is encouraged (e-mail to icas@tuj.temple.edu), but not required. 登録なしでも参加できますので、直接会場へお越しください。

This event is organized by Institute of Contemporary Asian Studies (ICAS).

Note: All ICAS events are held in English, open to the public, and admission is free unless otherwise noted.


Minjung Kim

Associate Executive Director, Save North Korea (SNK)

Minjung Kim is an associate executive director at Save North Korea (SNK), a human rights NGO helping North Korean refugees, and a vice president at Future Korea Media, a media company that publishes a biweekly journal focusing on international and domestic issues in South Korea. She is an omni-activist whose work ranges from mid-wave radio broadcasting and the management, from planning to execution, of diverse human rights improvement projects for North Korea, to the operation of a media company that covers national defense, national security, and foreign policy. She has successfully raised an annual budget of $300,000 to support mid-wave radio broadcasting and produces radio programs as a project director. Her work with SNK began at its birth in 1999. Since then, she has organized and presented research results at numerous seminars and events on North Korea worldwide and organized public campaigns to increase public awareness of North Korean human rights abuses and to mobilize global public opinion into action. Kim has also developed and coordinated various projects, including sending leaflet-balloons and hidden cameras into North Korea to encourage internal and civil activities, assisting the movement of North Korean refugees into South Korea via underground railroads, and aiding refugees to adjust socially and culturally. At Future Korea Journal, she has written, researched, and edited articles on North Korean affairs. Kim is a visiting researcher at the Walsh School of Foreign Service of Georgetown University. She was a research fellow at the Yonsei Institute for Modern Korean Studies and at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science & Technology (KAIST). Kim received an MA and a BA from Yonsei University and is a PhD candidate for international studies at the Yonsei Graduate School of International Studies.

Sean King

Sr. Vice President, Park Strategies LLC and former Senior Advisor for Asia in the U.S. & Foreign Commercial Service at the United States Department of Commerce

Sean King joined Park Strategies, a New York business advisory firm managed by former U.S. Senator Alfonse M. D’Amato, in 2006. His focus is Asia, generating business and supporting clients in the region. He is also an affiliated scholar at the University of Notre Dame’s Liu Institute for Asia and Asian Studies. Before joining Park Strategies, Mr. King spent five years at the U.S. Department of Commerce in Washington, DC, where he served as senior advisor for Asia in the U.S. and Foreign Commercial Service. Before joining Commerce, he was based in Singapore for both PricewaterhouseCoopers and Citibank. He also worked for the New York State Department of Economic Development, on whose behalf he led a 1997 trade mission to Taiwan. Mr. King makes regular public speaking appearances, is a frequent on-air television guest, and his opinions and quotes have appeared in numerous publications. He has also authored two book chapters on Taiwan. He has an MBA from Notre Dame and an undergraduate degree from American University in Washington, D.C. As part of his MBA, Mr. King did a summer internship for Citibank in Taipei. In a previous Cold War life, he visited what was then East Germany four times. He is fluent in Swedish.