US: North Korea releases two American prisoners

Kenneth Bae, one of two detainees released by North Korean authorities. Picture: AP

Kenneth Bae, one of two detainees released by North Korean authorities. Picture: AP

Share this article
0
Have your say

THE two remaining Americans who had been held in North Korea have been released and are on their way home, US officials said today.

Kenneth Bae and Matthew Miller were the last Americans held by North Korea following the release last month of Jeffrey Fowle, an Ohio resident detained for nearly six months.

Matthew Todd Miller. Picture: AP

Matthew Todd Miller. Picture: AP

CONNECT WITH THE SCOTSMAN

Subscribe to our daily newsletter (requires registration) and get the latest news, sport and business headlines delivered to your inbox every morning

• You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Google +

Miller, from Bakersfield, California, was serving a six-year jail term on charges of espionage, after he allegedly ripped his tourist visa at Pyongyang Airport in April and demanded asylum. North Korea said Miller had wanted to experience prison life so that he could secretly investigate North Korea’s human rights situation.

Bae, from Lynnwood, Washington state, is a Korean-American missionary with health problems. He was serving a 15-year sentence for alleged anti-government activities. He was detained in 2012 while leading a tour group to a North Korea economic zone.

Fowle had been detained after leaving a Bible in a nightclub in the hope that it would reach the country’s underground Christian community.

The announcement about Bae and Miller came one day before President Barack Obama is due to travel to Asia for a three-country visit.

The development does not mean a change in US posture regarding North Korea’s disputed nuclear program, and the North still must show it is serious and ready to abide by commitments toward denuclearization and improved human rights, said a senior Obama administration official who spoke on condition of anonymity.

The official said there was no quid pro quo involved in the Americans’ release.

SEE ALSO

Get me out North Korea jail, pleads American

Alex Massie: North Korea is really no joke

SCOTSMAN TABLET AND IPHONE APPS

• Download your free 30-day trial for our iPad, Android Android and Kindle apps

Keep up to date with all aspects of Scottish life with The Scotsman iPhone app, completely free to download and use

Back to the top of the page