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Pyongyang confirms release of US citizen Jeffrey Fowle — KCNA

October 22, 2014, 16:26 UTC+3 PYONGYANG
South Korea welcomed the release of the American citizen and called on Pyongyang to release the others
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© AP Photo/David Kohl

PYONGYANG, October 22. /TASS/. Pyongyang has released Jeffrey Fowle, one of three Americans being held captive by North Korea (DPRK), the North’s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said on Wednesday.

The US citizen has been released “pursuant to President Barack Obama’s repeated requests,” the agency said.

“The US citizen who arrived in DPRK as a tourist on April 29, committed actions in violation of the country’s law,” KCNA reported previously. Fowle was detained in April after apparently leaving a Bible in the bathroom of a nightclub in the northern port of Chongjin.

In September, the Supreme Court of North Korea sentenced to six years of hard labour American Matthew Miller who was kept in custody since April 2014. According to KCNA, he confessed “to committing hostile acts against DPRK where he arrived this April as a tourist.”

Another US citizen of Korean descent Pae Jun Ho, known as Kenneth Bae by US authorities, was found guilty in an April 30, 2013 trial of “hostile acts to bring down its government” and planning anti-North Korea religious activities. He was sentenced to 15 years in a North Korean labour camp. The American was arrested in Rason City in the northeast of North Korea on November 3, 2012. He arrived in North Korea as a tourist.

DPRK and the United States have no diplomatic relations. The interests of Washington in Pyongyang are represented by the Swedish embassy. The two countries’ bilateral political tension has been maintained over many years.

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