North Korea Has Detained an 85-Year-Old American

According to the man’s family, an 85-year-old American who was visiting North Korea, was pulled off his plane by authorities just minutes before it was scheduled to depart. Now, the family of Merrill Newman has come forward, telling CNN that North Korea has held their father since the incident on Oct. 26. Newman’s son told the news network, “This is a misunderstanding. My father is a (Korean War) veteran and wanted to see the country and culture he has been interested in for years. He arranged this with a travel agent that was recommended and said was approved by the North Korean government for travel of foreigners.”

Though the State Department has no diplomatic relationship with the reclusive country that is believed to have committed countless human rights violations, officials are attempting to negotiate the man’s release through China, a chief North Korean ally. Newman is now the second American to be held by the regime of dictator Kim Jong Un. In November 2012, Christian missionary Kenneth Bae, who is an American citizen, was convicted of unspecified “hostile acts” against the regime and sentenced to 15 years in prison. Bae’s health has reportedly been deteriorating while suffering in the horrific conditions of a North Korean labor camp …

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