In June, journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee were sentenced to 12 years in a labor camp, after crossing into North Korea while working on a story for Current TV about the sad lives of the country’s female refugees. Hillary Clinton is hustling to try to get the two released, but so far things aren’t going very well. The only good news in the story is that Laura’s sister, Lisa Ling, who you probably remember from “The View,” got a call from her last night. “It was a tremendous relief to hear Laura’s voice. The silence has been just so terrifying and deafening,” Lisa told a radio station this morning. “She was very specific about the message she was communicating and she said, ‘Look, we violated North Korean law and we need our government to help us. We’re sorry about everything that happened, but now we need diplomacy.” Let’s hope it works. [AFP via Yahoo News] Keep reading »
I can’t stop thinking about how insane it is that journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee were sentenced to 12 years in a North Korean labor camp for committing a still undefined crime. President Obama has promised to stop at nothing to get them released, but still—if I ever took my freedom for granted, I won’t anymore. What did these women do? Did they cross the Chinese border into North Korea illegally? Were they being used as bargaining chips in a U.N. debate? All we know is that they were chasing a human rights story for Current TV. Now the details of the story they were tracking are finally starting to emerge.
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North Korea’s highest court sentenced American journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee today to 12 years in a labor camp for illegal entry into the country and an unspecified “grave crime.” Seoul officials said the decision is final, as the top North Korean court does not allow appeals. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has called for the country to release Ling and Lee, and word is that despite not having formal diplomatic relations with North Korea, the U.S. will send someone like Al Gore (who owns Current, where the women work) or New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson on a mission to get the journalists released. All we can think about is Lee’s four-year-old daughter who, at this point, still thinks her mommy is away for work. [CNN, Korea Times, Liberate Laura & Euna Now] Keep reading »