08/12/2013, 00.00
KOREA

Health of Christian missionary held in Pyongyang labour camp deteriorates

The family of Kenneth Bae, also known as Pae Jun-ho, report he has been hospitalized near the capital. Sentenced to 15 years hard labor he is no longer able to work: "He's 45 years old, has diabetes and a heart malformation. We are very worried. "

Seoul (AsiaNews) - Christian missionary Kenneth Bae sentenced to 15 years hard labor by the government of North Korea on charges of "crimes against the state" has reportedly been hospialized near Pyongyang in "standard" care conditions. Bae, also known as Pae Jun-ho, is in the North Korean prison since November 2012 but was only brought to trial on May 2.

According to his sister Terri Chung, who spoke with an American website, the detainee "is too weak to work. He is 45 years, has diabetes and a heart malformation. We are very worried about his health, its getting worse by the day" . For about a month, American diplomacy has been doing everything possible to secure the release of its citizen: Some sources speak of a possible trip of former U.S. president Jimmy Carter to North Korea to negotiate his release.

Kenneth Bae is known to be a "devout Christian." According to the charges brought by Pyongyang, he used his work - a tour operators across the 38th parallel - to "foment and train target groups to overthrow the legitimate government of Korea." Several sources claim that Bae simply brought humanitarian aid to certain groups of North Koreans near the border. In North Korea, there is no religious freedom and the faithful are in last place in the hierarchy of society.

 

 

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