In October, American Live Wire reported that one of the American detainees was released from North Korea. At that time we were hopeful that negotiations of sorts were also underway to secure the release of the 2 other remaining American detainees. The two younger detainees,who were both serving hard labor sentences in North Korean prisons, are finally released from prison in North Korea, and are on their way home to their families in America.
2 More American Detainees Released From North Korea
Kenneth Bae and Matthew Todd Miller are reportedly flying home to the United States to be reunited with their families. Each one had faced long and grueling sentences in North Korean prisons, of which were the concern of many human rights groups. While these 2 may be released, there are many other North Koreans who suffer unknown horrors in the care of government run labor camps and prisons in the reclusive country.
Kenneth Bae, 46, was arrested under the serious charges of proselytizing, which means spreading a theological belief. North Korea has strict laws against spreading religion, and takes attempts to do so very seriously. Bae was on a humanitarian mission in North Korea a few years ago, when he was arrested for these charges. North Korea sees the influx of outside religions to be a national threat to their government’s authority over the people. He was sentenced to many years of hard labor for his crime, of which he is very lucky to be getting released after only serving a couple years of the sentence. During the two years that Bae performed hard labor his health had reportedly declined due to extreme conditions and poor diet.
The younger Matthew Todd Miller, 25, was a bit of a different situation. Unlike the two other Americans who were held under charges of spreading a religion, Miller went to North Korea seeking political asylum. His behavior baffled his family in the US, and seemed to confuse the North Korean government as well. Due to strict laws in North Korea governing how people should behave in public, Miller’s actions landed him a conviction of behaving in an unruly manner. He was expected to serve 6 years of hard labor.
The US Director of National Intelligence, James R Clapper Jr, was able to negotiate the release of these 2 remaining US prisoners from North Korea. The negotiations occurred under the table, and were held in secret from the media. Upon the successful release of both prisoners, it was decided to release the good news that the last 2 Americans were finally released from North Korea. This secret negotiation does not imply in any way that relations between the US and North Korea have improved by any significant measure, but it does give some hope that the government of North Korea is willing to accept whatever terms we agreed to for their release.
2 More American Detainees Released From North Korea.