U.N. may investigate N. Korean officials for crimes against humanity

I don’t know what’s gotten into the U.N. lately, but this would be a pretty big deal:

North Korea’s leaders are likely to be the target of a U.N. investigation into their personal responsibility for rapes, torture, executions, arbitrary arrests and abductions, following an expert report published on Tuesday.

The report by Marzuki Darusman, an Indonesian lawyer who is the U.N. Special Rapporteur on human rights in North Korea, said North Korea’s “grave, systematic and widespread” human rights violations ought to be laid bare before the U.N. Human Rights Council and the U.N. General Assembly.

“The inquiry should examine the issues of institutional and personal accountability for such violations, in particular where they amount to crimes against humanity, and make appropriate recommendations to the authorities of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and international community for further action,” said Darusman’s report.  [Reuters]

Sure, China will block it and it’s all non-binding, but steps like these would matter for public awareness and to help get third countries to cooperate with sanctions.  It would also matter in smaller ways.  For example, it might make a few “liberal”-minded tourists think twice about taking overpriced guided tours of Pyongyang that subsidize a regime that treats people this way.  I mean, Sun City, anyone?