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N. Korea remains unresponsive to inquiries about US service member in custody: state dept.By Yonhap
Published : July 25, 2023 - 09:13
The United States has not had any substantive response from North Korea about the safety of a US service member who crossed the inter-Korean border into the reclusive state last week, a state department spokesperson said Monday.
Matthew Miller also said the North has not responded to any requests, including those from United Nations Command, to confirm the whereabouts or well-being of the US soldier.
"It is my understanding that there has been no new communication since last week. communications that happened in the early days," the department spokesperson told a daily press briefing when asked if there has been any communication with North Korea.
The US service member, identified as Pvt. 2nd Class Travis King, crossed the military demarcation line at the Joint Security Area in the demilitarized zone on Tuesday.
The deputy commander of the UNC was earlier reported as saying that a "conversation has commenced" with North Korea over Pvt. King.
Miller dismissed reports that the North has responded to UNC's messages.
"I think the reports may have resulted from a misinterpretation of the UN Command's original statement, but I will leave it to them to discuss the details of that. But I'm not aware of any new communications, other than those that happened in the very early hours or early days after he (King) went across the border," he said.
"On the UN side, my understanding is that the North Koreans acknowledged they received the message. I'll let you decide whether that constitutes an actual response or not," added Miller. "On our side, as I said last week, we have a number of channels through which we are able to send messages to them. We have delivered the messages to North Korea, but we have as yet not received a response." (Yonhap)
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