Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

"Why Are So Many Children Dying in Gaza?"

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Central African Republic: Seleka calls for partition

Read more

DEBATE

Nigeria: One Hundred Days and Counting (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Nigeria: One Hundred Days and Counting

Read more

FOCUS

Can Chancellor Merkel's winning streak last?

Read more

FOCUS

Hunger in a fertile land...

Read more

ENCORE!

High-tech acting king Andy Serkis on Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Read more

REPORTERS

Hong Kong in rebellion against the 'motherland'

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

Dalia Grybauskaite, President of the Republic of Lithuania

Read more

  • Israel faces heightened diplomatic pressure as Gaza bloodshed deepens

    Read more

  • In pictures: Thousands march for Gaza peace in Paris

    Read more

  • Bomb attacks leave scores dead in north Nigeria

    Read more

  • Remains of Flight MH17 victims arrive in the Netherlands

    Read more

  • Ryanair ordered to pay back €9.6m in illegal state aid to France

    Read more

  • Two Ukrainian fighter jets shot down over rebel-held territory

    Read more

  • Gaza protests: ‘France imported the Mideast conflict a long time ago’

    Read more

  • Video: Fear, death and mourning in Gaza’s Khan Younis

    Read more

  • TransAsia Airways Taiwan crash leaves dozens dead

    Read more

  • Poland’s Rafal Majka wins 17th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • Young riders raise French hopes for Tour de France

    Read more

  • Defying UK, France to proceed with warships sale to Russia

    Read more

  • US courts issue conflicting reports on Obamacare

    Read more

  • Video: Lebanon fears fallout from regional turmoil

    Read more

Asia-pacific

US man gets eight-year sentence for 'illegal entry'

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2010-04-07

A North Korean court has sentenced Aijalon Mahli Gomes, a US national said to have illegally entered the reclusive state in January, to eight years of hard labour, according to state media.

REUTERS- North Korea said on Wednesday it had sentenced an American man to eight years of hard labour for illegally entering the country, a decision that could further strain ties with Washington.

North Korea has previously used detained American citizens as bargaining chips and the announcement comes as the United States has been putting pressure on North Korea to return to stalled international nuclear disarmament talks.
 
Last month, the North said it was putting on trial 30-year-old Aijalon Mahli Gomes, from Boston, who entered the reclusive state in January.
 
“His guilt was confirmed according to the relevant articles of the criminal code of the DPRK (North Korea) at the trial,” KCNA said.
 
“The accused admitted all the facts which had been put under accusation. The presence of representatives of the Swedish embassy here to witness the trial was allowed as an exception at the request of the Swedish side protecting the U.S. interests,” KCNA said.
 
The U.S. State Department had no immediate comment.  Washington does not have formal diplomatic ties with North Korea.
 
Gomes had been teaching English in Seoul for about two years before making the trip to North Korea. He was also active in Protestant churches, his colleagues said.
 
He likely crossed into North Korea in support of U.S. Christian missionary Robert Park who entered the North on Christmas Day to raise awareness about its human rights abuses, said an activist who helped arrange Park’s trip.
 
Park was released in February after the North’s official media said he confessed to his crimes.
 
In previous cases, North Korea has typically released Americans a few months after their capture after trying to win concessions from Washington.

 

Date created : 2010-04-07

COMMENT(S)