A South Korean missionary arrested in North Korea in October was paraded before the press on Thursday confessing that he spied for South Korea's National Intelligence Service.
Kim Jung-wook, a Baptist, said he had been plotting to turn North Korea into "a religious country" and destroy its present political system.
He added he received money and instructions from the South Korean intelligence services and arranged for North Koreans "to act as their spies."
North Korea often scripts such public confessions from foreigners who are arrested by way of spurring negotiations with their home countries and for propaganda purposes.
The Unification Ministry in a statement on Thursday expressed regret at Kim's detention and urged Pyongyang to send him back to the South.