The United Nations is about to publish a report on North Korea outlining what are described as unspeakable atrocities suffered by citizens at the hands of the state.
The year-long inquiry is expected to urge punishment for systematic violations by the state.
More than 80 witnesses across four countries appeared before the panel to give evidence of torture, starvation and summary execution at the hands of the North Korean state, the BBC reports.
Many witnesses spoke about life inside a network of political prison camps hidden in North Korea's mountainous countryside.
Testimony to the panel has included an account of a woman forced to drown her own baby, children imprisoned from birth and starved, and families tortured for watching a foreign soap opera.
A former prison guard described what satellite photographs of those sites don't reveal.
Inmates, he said, were sent to die in the camps, their public records already erased, and the guards saw them as less than human.
North Korea refused to participate with the inquiry and has rejected any claims of rights violations and crimes against humanity.