3 Americans, 6 S.Koreans Still Detained in N.Korea

  • By Kim Myong-song

    March 05, 2018 11:05

    Three American citizens and six South Koreans remain detained in North Korea.

    The most prominent is Kim Dong-chul, a Korean-American missionary, who was arrested in the Rajin-Sonbong Special Economic Zone on Oct. 2, 2015. He was caught in missionary activities and trade while traveling between the North and China.

    The North Korean regime made him appear at a scripted news conference in Pyongyang on March 25, 2016, where he confessed to "espionage activities on South Korea's instructions in systematically collecting secrets of the North Korean party, state, and military and handing them over to the South."

    Tony Kim, also known as Kim Sang-duk, was a visiting professor of accounting at Pyongyang University of Science and Technology when he was arrested on April 21 last year for unspecified "hostile acts" against the regime. While teaching earlier at Yanbian University of Science and Technology, Kim was engaged in aid activities. When he was arrested, he had been staying in the North for about a month.

    Chinese-born Korean Kim Hak-song was detained in the North on May 7 last year. He studied theology in Los Angeles and obtained American citizenship in 2008. He had worked at Pyongyang University of Science and Technology since 2014 and was also arrested for "hostile acts" in Pyongyang while waiting for a train bound for his hometown of Dandong, China.

    The U.S. has tried to negotiate their release, but to no avail.

    Six South Koreans are also held in the North, according to the government here. They include evangelical missionaries Kim Jung-wook, Kim Kuk-ki and Choi Chun-gil, who were detained in October 2013, October 2014, and in December 2014. The other three are North Korean defectors who have South Korean citizenship.

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