North Korea

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N. Korea: We Can't 'Refrain' From Nuke Test

Pyongyang irate over UN vote on human rights abuses

(Newser) - Two days after the UN's toothless vote to haul North Korea's leaders into the Hague over human rights violations , Pyongyang is doubling down on its threatened response to the "political provocation." In a statement today, it says that "the United States' hostile acts are leaving... More »

UN: North Korean Leaders Should Be Prosecuted

Non-binding resolution passes; China, Russia stand in way

(Newser) - North Korea's leaders should be prosecuted for crimes against humanity, according to none other than the UN. In a 111-19 vote, with 55 abstentions, UN members made what the New York Times calls the organization's strongest-ever move against the North, saying its leaders had violated human rights and... More »

Why Obama Sent Our Top Spy to North Korea

James Clapper retrieved Kenneth Bae and Matthew Todd Miller

(Newser) - One-time North Korean prisoners Kenneth Bae and Matthew Todd Miller are back on US soil, having landed Saturday night near Tacoma, Wash. They were retrieved by National Intelligence Director James Clapper, and the New York Times today reads into the decision to send Clapper—rather than a senior diplomat—to... More »

Bae Nods to 'Amazing 2 Years' as Captives Return

DNI James Clapper secured release of prisoners from North Korea

(Newser) - The last two Americans being held captive by North Korea returned home last night. Kenneth Bae and Matthew Miller landed at a Washington state military base after their departure was secured through a secret mission by James Clapper, director of national intelligence. Bae, surrounded by family members, spoke briefly after... More »

North Korea Frees Last 2 Americans

Matthew Miller and Kenneth Bae are released

(Newser) - No more Americans are being held in North Korea: Pyongyang today released Kenneth Bae and Matthew Miller, both of whom had been sentenced to years of hard labor, reports CNN . As with the recent release of Jeffrey Fowle , it wasn't clear what prompted the move, though the State Department... More »

Kim Jong Un Ditches the Cane

Appeared in public without it in latest show of strength

(Newser) - What with his nation's recent naval triumphs and Ebola crackdown , Kim Jong Un is a busy guy. So North Korea watchers can rest easier knowing that Kim is apparently back on his own two feet. As Bloomberg reports via state media ( pictures here ), the strongman appeared in... More »

North Korea Launches 'New' Ballistic Sub*

*Geriatric Soviet subs years away from being able to fire missiles

(Newser) - North Korea has reportedly launched a new class of submarine that's capable of firing ballistic missiles, and as Yonhap reports, that's "raising further concerns over the North's evolving missile and nuclear threats." But don't everybody run to the bunker just yet: Reading between the... More »

Freed American: Yes, I Planted Bible in N. Korea

Jeffrey Fowle admits he was trying to help 'underground' Christians

(Newser) - When North Korea imprisoned American tourist Jeffrey Fowle, it accused him of planting a Bible in a bid to spread Christianity. A family spokesperson denied at the time that he was on a religious mission, but now that he's free, Fowle admits that Pyongyang was right. "I did,... More »

Ebola-Free N. Korea Freaks Out Over Ebola

All foreigners entering will be put in mandatory 21-day quarantine

(Newser) - "For the record: There have been no cases of Ebola in North Korea," writes Eric Talmadge, AP 's bureau chief in Pyongyang, in a look at the latest threat that has North Korea all aflutter. Namely, Ebola. Though the nearest confirmed case is 6,000 miles away—... More »

Kim Jong Un's Health Mystery Solved?

South Korea's spy agency blames a cyst

(Newser) - South Korea's spy agency thinks it has solved one of 2014's great mysteries: why Kim Jong Un disappeared for six weeks. (He's not only back in view , he's inspecting kids' tea sets .) Two lawmakers tell Yonhap that the National Intelligence Service revealed that a cyst... More »

N. Korea Opens to US Journos for Rare Road Trip

Country opens up for tourism—sort of

(Newser) - Mount Paektu is a "majestic" thing, "with its jagged peaks surrounding a crystal-blue crater lake," writes Eric Talmadge, the AP's Pyongyang bureau chief. Though it would seem fated to be a tourist destination, few foreigners have set their eyes on its natural beauty. This is North... More »

N. Korea Releases American Detainee

Jeffrey Fowle is on his way to Guam; 2 others still held

(Newser) - Jeffrey Fowle, one of three Americans being held in North Korea, was released today after six months in custody and is currently aboard an American plane bound for Guam, reports CNN . A State Department official confirmed the release of Fowle, an Ohio resident who was suspected of leaving a Bible... More »

Koreas Exchange Fire for 2nd Time in 10 Days

Border guards exchange fire, but no casualties reported

(Newser) - Border guards of the rival Koreas exchanged gunfire today along their heavily fortified border in the second such shootout in less than 10 days, South Korean officials said. The shootout occurred after South Korean soldiers broadcast warning and fired warning shots against about 10 North Korean soldiers who were approaching... More »

Kim Jong Un Is Back—but Why the Cane?

AP points out Kim Jong Il never appeared in public with one

(Newser) - Let one line of speculation end and another begin: After not being seen in public for 40 days, Kim Jong Un is back . But he appeared in images released by state media with a cane in hand, leading to a fresh mystery: Why? As far as North Korea's leaders... More »

News Agency: Kim Jong Un Appears in Public

North Korean leader turns up after 5 weeks

(Newser) - North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un has made his first public appearance in five weeks, the country's official news agency reports, ending an absence that fueled global speculation that something was amiss with the country's most powerful person. Resuming what had been a regular practice before he stopped... More »

N. Korea: We Moved US Troops' Remains 'En Masse'

Pyongyang warning may be aimed at launching talks: 'NYT'

(Newser) - More than six decades after the Korean War ended, some 7,800 American soldiers are still considered missing in North Korea—and the country is warning that their remains could soon be gone, the New York Times reports. The remains were "carried away en masse" from burial areas "... More »

Kim Jong Un a No-Show at Key Event, But ...

Source says he hurt his leg at military drill

(Newser) - The might of the Workers' Party "is growing stronger under the seasoned guidance of Marshal Kim Jong Un," North Korean state media announced today—but the marshal's whereabouts are still unknown and he was apparently missing from a major event today. Top North Korean leaders visited a... More »

Defectors: Kim's Sister May Be Running North Korea

Rumors fly as leader remains out of sight

(Newser) - As Kim Jong Un remains out of sight —and North Korean officials do unusual things like admit the country has labor camps —Pyongyang-watchers are starting to wonder who's running the place. Amid rumors of a "palace coup," a think tank run by North Korean defectors... More »

North Korea: Yes, We Have Labor Camps

But 'no prison, things like that,' UN envoy says

(Newser) - A North Korean official publicly acknowledged to the international community the existence of his country's "reform through labor" camps yesterday, a mention that appeared to come in response to a highly critical UN human rights report earlier this year. A North Korean foreign ministry official said at a... More »

Korean Warships Trade Fire

After ship from North crosses into Southern territory

(Newser) - Warships from the rival Koreas exchanged warning shots today after a North Korean ship briefly violated the disputed western sea boundary, a South Korean defense official said. The shots were fired into the sea and there have been no reports of injuries or damage to the ships of either side,... More »

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