Kenneth Bae’s Family Disappointed That US Envoy Will Not Be Allowed to Intervene in North Korea

Aug 30, 2013

The family of Lynwood, Washington's Kenneth Bae has responded to word that the North Korean government has rescinded an invitation to the U.S. State Department. The Department was sending a senior envoy to Pyongyang to intervene on behalf of Bae, who has been held as a prisoner since April.

Bae’s sister, Terry Chung says their family is “disappointed by the news,” but that they hold on to faith that the two governments will resume talks soon, ultimately leading to Bae’s release.

Washington U.S. Congressman Rick Larson has been working with Bae’s family to get federal attention to his plight. He also says he’s not giving up hope.

“I don’t see this as the end. I see this as a setback, but not the end. It’s just that when you’re dealing with the North Korean regime, sometimes, it is a little like rolling dice with them, and you don’t know what’s going to come up" says Larson.

Congressman Larson says he will continue to work with the State Department on the situation.

The 45 year old Bae was sentenced to 15 years of hard labor by the North Korean government, which accused him of subversion.

He was recently hospitalized. Larson says Bae’s health would improve if he were able to be treated in the U.S.

Copyright 2013 KUOW