N. Korea may be looking to open a line of communication with the - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

N. Korea may be looking to open a line of communication with the U.S.

Posted: Updated:
A CNN crew was in North Korea on a sports diplomacy tour when they had their plans changed by the North Korean government. (Source: CNN) A CNN crew was in North Korea on a sports diplomacy tour when they had their plans changed by the North Korean government. (Source: CNN)
One prisoner’s covert action of leaving a Bible behind during a tour has him facing trial. Experts say religion threatens the North Korean regime, because only their leaders are considered “divine.” (Source: CNN) One prisoner’s covert action of leaving a Bible behind during a tour has him facing trial. Experts say religion threatens the North Korean regime, because only their leaders are considered “divine.” (Source: CNN)
The NK government allowing the interviews with Bae, Fowle, and Miller could be a way to reach out to the United States. (Source: CNN) The NK government allowing the interviews with Bae, Fowle, and Miller could be a way to reach out to the United States. (Source: CNN)
  • InternationalMore>>

  • Militants attack Pakistani post near Afghan border

    Militants attack Pakistani post near Afghan border

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 3:41 AM EDT2014-09-16 07:41:20 GMT
    Pakistan's military says its warplanes have targeted three militant hideouts in a Taliban stronghold near the Afghan border, killing at least 20 insurgents.
    Pakistan's army says a group of militants have attacked one of its positions from neighboring Afghanistan, sparking a shootout that left 11 insurgents and three soldiers killed.
  • 3 killed, 5 wounded in Donetsk in eastern Ukraine

    3 killed, 5 wounded in Donetsk in eastern Ukraine

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 3:41 AM EDT2014-09-16 07:41:19 GMT
    The city council in Donetsk says three people have been killed and five wounded in shelling overnight in the city in eastern Ukraine.
    The city council in Donetsk says three people have been killed and five wounded in shelling overnight in the city in eastern Ukraine.
  • Roadside bomb kills 6 policemen in Egypt

    Roadside bomb kills 6 policemen in Egypt

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 3:22 AM EDT2014-09-16 07:22:09 GMT
    Egypt's Interior Ministry says a roadside bomb has killed five police conscripts and an officer and injured two others near the border town of Rafah in the restive Sinai Peninsula.
    Egypt's Interior Ministry says a roadside bomb has killed five police conscripts and an officer and injured two others near the border town of Rafah in the restive Sinai Peninsula.

(CNN) – The White House says it's doing what it can to secure the release of three Americans held in North Korea.

In an exclusive interview, the three detainees said they felt this might be their last chance to reach out to the U.S. government for help.

A CNN crew was on trip to cover pro-wrestlers on a “sports diplomacy” mission to North Korea, when they had a sudden change of plans.

Government minders abruptly cancelled the crew's sightseeing tour and instead put them in a van racing through the North Korean countryside.

As the crew approached Pyongyang, they were told to expect an interview with a “government official.” When they arrived, the crew learned who was really inside.

Pyongyang granted CNN reporter Will Ripely exclusive and strictly-controlled access to the three American detainees.

North Korea called it a favor, but Ripley believes that the government is looking for a line of communication with the U.S.

Kenneth Bae is serving 15 years of hard labor in North Korea.

"I'm the only prisoner in the camp," Bae said.

He is housed separately from what Amnesty International estimates are 200,000 North Korean prisoners. The human rights group says they endure “horrific conditions” at six prison camps.

Bae says his health is failing, but his treatment is humane.

"Condition in labor camp, I'm working 8 hours a day, 6 days a week," Bae said.

As Bae serves his sentence, Jeffrey Fowle waits to learn his. He's living in a hotel room ahead of his trail. But it could be sentenced to a labor camp if he's found guilty.

"I'm getting desperate,” Fowle said. “I'm getting desperate."

Fowle's already confessed to leaving a Bible in North Korea. His own handwritten notes detail the so-called crime.

"It's a covert act and a violation of the tourist purpose as well," Fowle said.

That “covert act” of leaving a Bible could cost Fowle years of freedom.

Experts say religion threatens the North Korean regime. In a nations accused of widespread religious persecution, only the leaders are considered “divine.”

Each man is held in a different room down the same hallway. They never have contact with each other.

Matthew Miller is awaiting trial for tearing up his tourist visa and seeking asylum in North Korea.

"Why did you come here seeking asylum?" Ripley asked.

"During my investigation I have discussed by motive and for the interview it is not necessary," Miller said.

Now all he wants is help from the U.S. government. His trial and immediate sentence is expected later this month.

"This interview is my final chance," Miller said.

It's a chance to return to his old life, away from the absolute isolation of being held in North Korea.

During CNN's trip, government minders were always watching, which is to be expected. But what caught them by surprise is how North Korea appears to be reaching out the United States, using the three men to send a message.

Copyright 2014 CNN. All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow

310 Broadway
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701

FCC Public File
publicfile@kfvs12.com
573-335-1212
EEO Report
Closed Captioning

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and KFVS12. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.