North Korean leader Kim Jong Un guides a tactical rocket
firing drill of the KPA Strategic Force. REUTERS/KCNA
The US State Department, citing "humanitarian concerns,"
has asked North Korea to release two Americans who North Korean
official media said would be put on trial for committing crimes
against the state.
North Korea's official KCNA news agency, referring to the
imprisoned men, Jeffrey Fowle and Matthew Miller, said "their
hostile acts were confirmed by evidence and their own
Asked about the report, US State Department spokeswoman Jen
Psaki told reporters, "Out of humanitarian concern for Mr.
Fowle and Mr. Miller and their families, we request North
Korea release them so they may return home."
She also called on North Korea to pardon and release Kenneth
Bae, a Christian missionary who was arrested in November
2012, convicted and sentenced by North Korea's supreme court
to 15 years hard labor last year.
"We request North Korea pardon Kenneth Bae and grant him
special amnesty and immediate release so he may reunite with
his family and seek medical care," Psaki said.
The United States has no diplomatic relations with North
Korea and works through Swedish diplomats when US citizens
Psaki said Swedish officials had visited Fowle on June 20 and
Miller on May 9 and June 21. It is unclear whether both men
are being held in the same location.
Psaki declined to give additional information citing concerns
for their safety.