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Bill Clinton’s Trip to North Korea

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(Instead of writing post after post, I’ll just keep editing this one with updates on Bill Clinton in North Korea.)

August 5th:

4:25pm:

 

Laura Ling and Euna Lee flying to Los Angeles, CA.

A U.S. Administration Official states, “He said Laura Ling, 32, and Euna Lee, 36, had told their families during telephone calls from prison that Pyongyang suggested to them that if Mr Clinton came as a private envoy to the country they would be freed.”

So they had a plan all along. I’m just thrilled that they are on a plane, outside of North Korea.

Read the news here: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/8184698.stm

1:00pm:

Kim Jong Il issues special pardon for Laura Ling and Euna Lee!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/8184583.stm

The grounds on which this pardon was issued may be questionable, just as people have been criticizing Bill Clinton’s unannounced trip to North Korea, but we can all breathe a sigh of relief and look forward to seeing these girls home again, hopefully this week.

10:20am:

This image made from video broadcast Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2009, by KRT, shows an still photograph of former US President Bill Clinton, right, standing with North Korea's leader Kim Jong II in Pyongyang, North Korea. Former US President Bill Clinton met Tuesday with North Korean leader Kim Jong Il on the first day of a surprise visit to Pyongyang, holding "exhaustive" talks that covered a wide range of topics, state-run media said. (AP Photo/KRT TV via APTN)

Bill Clinton meets with NKorean leader Kim Jong : http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/08/04/north-korea-welcomes-bill_n_250682.html

 

8:30am:

 It’s been over a decade since a U.S. official of this high status has visited North Korea. Here’s an excerpt from this morning’s LA Times article on the matter:

“Reporting from Seoul and Washington — Former President Clinton is likely to win the release of two imprisoned American TV journalists as early as Wednesday and has already begun negotiations with North Korean officials in Pyongyang, a news service in Seoul reported today.
Citing unidentified sources in the South Korean government, Yonhap news agency said Clinton may head back to Washington less than a day after arriving in Pyongyang.
Washington, the sources said, has made it clear that its current diplomatic standoff with Pyongyang is a separate matter from the efforts to release the two journalists, sentenced to 12 years in prison for illegally entering the secretive nation earlier this year.
Clinton met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Il and conveyed a message from President Obama, the official Korean Central News Agency said in a report from Pyongyang.”


Read it here at LATimes.

————————————-
More from the article:
Scott Snyder of the Asian Foundation: “The North Koreans have a lot of nostalgia for the end of the Clinton administration.”
Apparently this trip has been in talks for “months”.
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