Human Rights Chief Asks for Help for Workers

By Ahn Yong-kyun (, Chosun Ilbo, 4 November 2002, 17:10 KST

Head of Mongolian National Human Rights Commission Suren Teserendorj expressed gratitude Monday for the efforts of the National Human Rights Commission and other humanitarian organizations protecting foreign workers in Korea. He also thanked Korean hospitality, while pointing out many problems regarding Mongolian workers illegally staying in Korea.

He made an official visit to Korea last month to attend an open hearing regarding foreign workers’ human rights issues held in Seoul October 28, sponsored by the United Nation’s Commission on Sustainable Development. Teserendorj had deep concerns on the government’s decision to expel every single illegal immigrants staying in Korea by March next year. About 18,000 Mongolian workers are currently staying in Korea; mostly as illegal immigrants.

After meeting with several Mongolian workers, Teserendorj said most were concerned of possible arrest by the police, though industrial accidents and delays in payment also were problems.

The Mongolian National Human Rights Commission was formed in December 2000 and consists of one head, appointed by the president and confirmed by parliament, and two commissioners. It is reported that Teserendorj, the head since the formation of the commission, used to be a justice of the Mongolian Supreme Court. Korea is a benchmarking model for Mongolian industrialization. We want to be Korea’s partner to jointly improve human rights in both nations, he remarked.