Satellite images of one of North Korea's largest political prison camps suggests its inmate population is expanding, Amnesty International said Thursday in a report detailing rape and torture in the North's notorious gulag. The report by the London-based rights watchdog included rare testimony from a former camp guard, as well as from former inmates about the brutality prevalent in the prison system. "For Amnesty International, which has been investigating human rights violations for the last 50 years, we find North Korea to be in a category of its own," said Amnesty's East Asia researcher Rajiv Narayan. North Korea denies the existence of the political prison camps which, according to independent estimates, form a network holding between 100,000 and 200,000 people.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's cabinet approved a $182 billion economic package on Thursday to pull the economy out of deflation, but doubts remain about the economic impact. The package has raised concerns that Japan's government has not broken away from the stop-gap measures and piecemeal policymaking that some say has hampered long-term growth. "Market participants want the government to focus even more energy on economic policy," said Hiroshi Miyazaki, senior economist at Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities.