A new report from The Committee for Human Rights in North Korea states that an “extremely high” number of prisoners are detained on political grounds, while countless others are unaccounted for or have died in detention.

“Through this vast system of unlawful imprisonment, the North Korean regime isolates, banishes, punishes and executes those suspected of being disloyal to the regime,” the report states. “They are deemed ‘wrong-thinkers,’ ‘wrong-doers,’ or those who have acquired ‘wrong-knowledge’ or have engaged in ‘wrong-associations.’ ”

Korean-American Christian Kenneth Bae is one of many perceived political opponents in prison in North Korea. His trial and conviction came at a time of high tension between the US and North Korea, in the wake of the communist state’s third nuclear test.

The US Special Envoy for North Korean rights Robert King last week hoped to seek pardon for Bae, who is suffering from ill health, but King was refused entry.

Today former US basketball player Dennis Rodman is visiting ‘his friend’ Kim Jung-un. Rodman says he will not be discussing Bae’s case at all.

Meanwhile, the United Nations has been refused access to North Korea’s prison camps. However, an initial UN investigation found evidence of forced amputations and reports that a mother was forced to kill her own newborn baby, report The Telegraph, and the BBC.