Tuesday, 22 August, 2017

Pastor freed from North Korean prison arrives back in Canada

Canada FM urges US, North Korea to step back Canadian pastor freed from North Korea on his way home
Lucia Summers | 13 August, 2017, 18:23

OTTAWA-A pastor in ontario, who was serving a sentence of life in prison in North Korea finally returned to the country Saturday.

The Korean Central News Agency on Wednesday reported the pastor had been released on what it called "sick bail", but no other details were given.

Jang Bae, tells The Canadian Press in an email that Lim "will be attending service this Sunday".

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau confirmed Thursday that Hyeon Soo Lim has been released and will soon be reunited with his family.

Lim was detained by North Korean authorities in January 2015 while in the country on a charitable mission.

Canada does not have diplomatic offices in Pyongyang and relies on Sweden to handle consular issues. "There is a long way to go in terms of Reverend Lim's healing". "One of the things my father shared is that as a Canadian going to North Korea for him was to be able to share the blessing of Canada to those in North Korea", the pastor's son said.

Gold buoyed by North Korea tensions, United States inflation data
US crude (CLc1) was unchanged at $48.59 per barrel and Brent (LCOc1) was last at $51.84, down 1.63 percent on the day. Ongoing global glut concerns lingered in oil markets despite a bigger-than-expected draw in USA crude inventories.

The release comes at a time of swirling worldwide tension in Pyongyang, Steven Denney, a doctoral fellow at the Munk School of Global Affairs' Asian Institute, has said it is possible that Mr. Lim's release was intended as a goodwill message, to try to portray itself as a country capable of reasonable negotiation. A delegation of the government of canada was made this week to Pyongyang in North Korea, for its release.

Mr. Lim's family had grown increasingly concerned for his wellbeing following the death of Mr. Warmbier. Hyeong Soo Lim suffers from high blood pressure and has lost a lot of weight since his capture.

"Now more than ever, he's never felt more Canadian", the son said. Earlier this week, Trump said the country's threats against the USA would be met with "fire and fury". "It catalyzed discussions over additional human-rights-focused sanctions and prompted countries to re-evaluate their policies on tourism to the North", said Andrea Berger, senior research associate at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies.

The two nuclear powers have been steadily increasing their rhetoric, leading Freeland to condemn North Korea's actions but suggest it's time to reel in the verbal threats.

"He is doing very well, considering everything he has gone through", he said. "To know that Canada has stood for him, stood by him - we are so grateful".

Freeland said after meeting with members of the agricultural sector that the industry recommended the NAFTA talks could be used to reduce some of the red tape they face around cross-border trade.

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