Security issues have been at the center of the discourse on North Korea, which possesses nuclear weapons. Mikyoung Kim's book makes a valuable contribution to this discourse with a sophisticated analysis of political stances of four major regional countries, including China, Japan, South Korea, and the United States. She thoroughly explores the reactions of these countries and the background of these reactions with a focus on the human rights of North Korean refugees.

Regardless of much attention paid to human rights issues in North Korea within academia and without, the discourse is often colored with a bias due to the lack of a deeper understanding of North Korea. To deal with this potential problem, Kim starts her book with a discussion of North Korean human rights, which is in line with the old debate on Asian values and human rights. Rather than giving a direct answer to whether this debate...

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