07/20/2019 North Korea (International Christian Concern) – In his address at a ministerial meeting at the State Department on religious freedom on Thursday, Vice President Mike Pence criticized North Korea’s poor record on religious freedom and pressed the nuclear state to respect such liberty.
“You can be confident, as President Trump continues to pursue the denuclearization of North Korea and a lasting peace, the United States will continue to stand for the freedom of religion of all people of all faiths on the Korean peninsula,” said Pence, a Christian himself.
Pence cited the Christian persecution watchdog Open Doors, saying the group had “identified North Korea as the world’s worst persecutor of Christians for the past 18 years.”
On Wednesday, U.S. President Donald Trump also met with victims of religious persecution from numerous countries, including North Korea, at the White House.
Trump briefly spoke with a North Korean defector named Ju Illyong, who shared with the president about religious persecution in the DPRK and the underground churches there.
According to NK News, President Trump responded by telling Ju that he would “bring it up” though did not elaborate further, possibly fearing a negative impact on future talks with North Korea.