A retired US ambassador who used his connections to help negotiate the release of an American held by North Korea in 2014 said he does not expect to be involved in any talks with the country over a detained US student.
Former Ohio representative and US ambassador to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization Tony Hall 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 north in Miamisburg.
Hall said previously he got involved at the request of Fowle’s family, Fowle’s attorney and the US Department of State, which led the push for Fowle’s release.
In remarks published late on Friday in the newspaper, Hall said the North Koreans do not 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 US has little leverage with North Korea.
North Korea on Friday said that it had arrested Warmbier for committing a “hostile act” orchestrated by the US.
Ohio Governor John Kasich, a Republican presidential hopeful, has said North Korea should provide evidence against Warmbier or let him go.
A China-based travel agency on Saturday said that Warmbier was being held over an unspecified incident at his hotel before he was scheduled to board a flight for Beijing.
Young Pioneer Tours chief executive Gareth Johnson, on Saturday confirmed via e-mail Saturday that Warmbier had been staying at Pyongyang’s Yanggakdo International Hotel and was not with other tourists when the incident occurred.
A company statement said Warmbier was detained at the Pyongyang airport on Jan. 2, but it did not 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.
An Australian university student who has never visited China and has only a modest social media following would seem an unlikely target for the Chinese government. However, when a Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman personally denounced Drew Pavlou at a news conference, it was just the next phase in an extraordinary campaign against the 21-year-old that has fueled concerns over China’s targeting of critics overseas. Pavlou first placed himself in the superpower’s sights when in July last year he organized a small sit-in at the University of Queensland, where he studies, to protest against various Chinese government policies. Since then, the Global
‘ASKED TO MOVE OUT’: Indonesian coast guard personnel argued with a Chinese vessel over territorial claims after it entered the country’s exclusive economic zone An Indonesian patrol ship confronted a Chinese coast guard vessel that spent almost three days in waters where Indonesia claims economic rights and that are near the southernmost part of China’s disputed claims to the South China Sea. The Indonesian Maritime Security Agency on Friday night detected Chinese ship 5204 entering Indonesia’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) in what Indonesia calls the North Natuna Sea. The agency sent a patrol ship that closed within 1km of the Chinese coast guard vessel and they communicated to affirm their position and their nation’s claims to the area, Indonesian Maritime Security Agency head Aan Kurnia said. “We
BEFORE WINTER COMES: Snow cuts off roads into Ladakh for four months or more each year, so the crunch is on to get food, tents and high-altitude equipment to Leh From deploying mules to large transport aircraft, the Indian military has activated its entire logistics network to transport supplies to thousands of troops for a harsh winter along a bitterly disputed Himalayan border with China. In the past few months, one of India’s biggest military logistics exercises in years has brought vast quantities of ammunition, equipment, fuel, winter supplies and food into Ladakh, a region bordering Tibet that India administers as a union territory, officials said. The move was triggered by a border standoff with China in the snow deserts of Ladakh that began in May and escalated in June into hand-to-hand
Since her personal telephone number was posted online, Hong Kong democracy advocate and Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions chairperson Carol Ng has received menacing calls from strangers and been bombarded with messages calling her a “cockroach.” She is not alone. A sophisticated and shady Web site called HK Leaks has ramped up its “doxxing” — where people’s personal details are published online — of Hong Kong democracy advocates, targeting those it says have broken Hong Kong’s National Security Law. Promoted by groups linked to the Chinese Chinese Communist Party and hosted on Russia-based servers, HK Leaks has become the most prominent “doxxing”