Thu. Sep 21st, 2023

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SEOUL — North Korea mentioned Wednesday {that a} U.S. soldier who fled into its territory throughout the closely fortified border did so as a result of he was disillusioned with the “unequal American society.”

It’s the first time North Korea has publicly acknowledged the standing of Pvt. 2nd Class Travis King, who bolted into the North throughout a civilian tour of the Panmunjom border village final month.

King informed North Korean investigators that he determined to cross into North Korea, citing his “sick feeling towards inhuman maltreatment and racial discrimination inside the U.S. Military,” in line with the Korea Central Information Company, a North Korean state media outlet. He additionally expressed his willingness to hunt refuge in North Korea or a 3rd nation.

King admitted to “illegally” intruding into the North, the KCNA mentioned, with out mentioning any ensuing punishment on the soldier. The state media report didn’t specify King’s well being standing or plans for his launch.

The U.S. Division of Protection mentioned it couldn’t confirm North Korea’s feedback on King. “We stay centered on his secure return,” mentioned Pentagon spokesman Martin Meiners. U.S. protection officers have beforehand mentioned that the American serviceman “willfully and with out authorization” crossed into the North.

King is the primary U.S. nationwide identified to be detained in North Korea in almost 5 years. North Korea has a historical past of detaining overseas nationals for costs together with espionage and utilizing them as propaganda instruments.

This story is breaking and can be up to date.

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