Page last updated at 12:13 GMT, Monday, 22 March 2010

North Korea 'to try US citizen for illegal entry'

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North Korea is to put a US citizen on trial for illegally entering the country, its state news agency has said.

The citizen was named as 30-year-old Aijalon Mahli Gomes, from Boston, the Korean Central News Agency reported.

His "crime has been confirmed", it said, without giving further details.

In late January, the North said it had detained an unidentified American. Last week, the US said the state had allowed a diplomat to visit the detainee.

The diplomat was from the Swedish embassy, which represents US interests in Pyongyang. American authorities have not named the US citizen concerned.

Last month, North Korea freed religious activist Robert Park, who had crossed into the country from China by walking over a frozen river on 25 December.

He had reportedly wanted to highlight human rights issues in North Korea, but was said before his release to have admitted his "mistake".

Last year two US journalists, Laura Ling and Euna Lee, were also arrested by North Korea on the border with China.

They were sentenced to 12 years' hard labour but freed in August after four months in captivity, as part of a diplomatic mission spearheaded by former US President Bill Clinton.

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