Ex-diplomat not expecting role in talks on detained U.S. student

SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of -- A retired U.S. ambassador who used his connections to help negotiate the release of an American held by North Korea in 2014 said he doesn't expect to be involved in any talks with the country over a detained American student.

See Full Article

Tony Hall, a former diplomat and Ohio congressman, played a role in the release of Jeffrey Fowle, who was held by North Korea for nearly six months.

Hall told The Dayton Daily News that he does not anticipate being called on this time to lobby the North Korean government to release University of Virginia student Otto Warmbier.

Warmbier and Fowle are from southwest Ohio. Warmbier is from the Cincinnati area, and Fowle lives about 40 miles north in Miamisburg.

Hall said previously he got involved at the request of Fowle's family, Fowle's attorney and the U.S. Department of State, which led the push for Fowle's release.

In remarks published late Friday in the Dayton newspaper, Hall said the North Koreans don't give an inch.

"They are very, very tough people, and you've really got to understand them and their culture and the fact that they are a sovereign nation, and that's important to understand," he said.

Hall said the United States has little leverage with North Korea.

"One of the problems is we don't have a lot of leverage with North Korea because we don't have a relationship with them to speak of that's good," he said.

North Korea announced on Friday it arrested Warmbier for committing a "hostile act" orchestrated by the U.S.

Republican Ohio Gov. John Kasich, a presidential candidate, has said North Korea should provide evidence against Warmbier or let him go.

A China-based travel agency said Saturday that Warmbier was being held over an unspecified incident at his hotel before he was scheduled to board a flight for Beijing.

The CEO of Young Pioneer Tours, Gareth Johnson, confirmed via email Saturday that Warmbier had been staying at Pyongyang's Yanggakdo International Hotel and was not with other tourists when the incident occurred. The company statement said Warmbier was detained at the Pyongyang Airport on Jan. 2, but it didn't explain what happened at the hotel.

The company said an airport official told one of its guides after Warmbier was detained that he had been taken to a hospital. The guide attempted to go back to see him but was unable to as airport staff ushered her through immigration, the company said.

The U.S. and South Korea have been pushing for tough sanctions against the North over its latest nuclear test on Jan. 6. North Korea has detained a few Americans, South Koreans and other foreigners in recent years, accusing them of anti-North activities in what analysts say are attempts to wrest outside concessions.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Death toll of April Stockholm truck attack rises to 5 after woman dies

    World News CTV News
    STOCKHOLM - A woman in her 60s who was injured in the April 7 truck attack in Stockholm has died, Swedish authorities said Friday, raising the death toll to five. The Stockholm police said in a statement the woman, who has not been publicly identified, had been hospitalized in southern Sweden. Source
  • British police say they've foiled active terrorist plot

    World News CBC News
    British police said on Friday they had thwarted an active terrorism plot after a woman was shot during an armed raid on a house in north London. Armed counterterrorism officers using CS gas stormed a house in the Willesden area of the capital on Thursday evening which had been under surveillance, shooting a woman in her 20s. Source
  • Sweden truck attack death toll climbs to 5 after woman's death

    World News CBC News
    Swedish authorities say a woman in her 60s injured in the April 7 truck attack in Stockholm has died, raising the death toll to five. In a statement Friday, the Stockholm police said the woman, who has not been publicly identified, had been hospitalized in southern Sweden. Source
  • Peaceful demonstrations held at UC Berkeley as Ann Coulter is a no-show

    World News CTV News
    BERKELEY, Calif. - Ann Coulter did not turn up in Berkeley where hundreds held a raucous but largely peaceful demonstration in her absence and lamented what they called the latest blow to free speech in the home of America's free speech movement. Source
  • South Korea hits back after Trump says country has to pay for THAAD

    World News CTV News
    SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of - Contradicting U.S. President Donald Trump, South Korea said Friday it has no plan to renegotiate a bilateral trade deal with the U.S., or to pay for the U.S. missile defence system being deployed on its territory. Source
  • Witness says execution of 4th inmate in 8 days in Arkansas was problematic

    World News CBC News
    Arkansas executed its fourth inmate in eight days Thursday night, wrapping up an accelerated schedule with a lethal injection that left the prisoner lurching and convulsing 20 times before he died. Kenneth Williams, 38, was pronounced dead at 11:05 p.m. Source
  • Human rights group demands India prosecute 'cow protectors'

    World News CTV News
    NEW DELHI - A human rights group has expressed concern over rising brutal attacks in India by self-appointed "cow protectors" against Muslims and lower castes over rumours that they sold, bought or killed cows for beef. Source
  • South Korea baffled by Trump comments on missile defence, trade

    World News CBC News
    Contradicting U.S. President Donald Trump, South Korea said Friday it has no plan to renegotiate a bilateral trade deal with the U.S., or to pay for the U.S. missile defence system being deployed on its territory. Source
  • Secret jail discovered in Philippine police station

    World News CTV News
    MANILA, Philippines - Philippine police relieved a station chief and his staff on Friday after human rights representatives discovered a secret jail cell inside the Manila station where a dozen detainees complained they were being held for extortion. Source
  • Arkansas completes execution schedule, kills 4th person in 8 days

    World News CTV News
    VARNER, Ark. - Arkansas wrapped up an aggressive execution schedule Thursday, putting to death its fourth inmate in eight days. Kenneth Williams, 38, received a lethal injection Thursday night at the Cummins Unit prison at Varner for the death of a former deputy warden killed after Williams escaped from prison in 1999. Source