Freed Journalists Lee, Ling Pen 'L.A. Times' Op-Ed

By: Joe Strupp The Los Angeles Times today published a joint Op-Ed piece by Laura Ling and Euna Lee, their first written account of their five-month detention in a North Korean prison.

In the article, Lee and Ling describe how they crossed into North Korea "across the frozen Tumen River to document the route used by human traffickers smuggling North Koreans over the border. After making it back into China, the two women were arrested by North Korean guards who pursued them across the river," a release stated.

"We tried with all our might to cling to bushes, ground, anything that would keep us on Chinese soil, but we were no match for the determined soldiers," the pair writes. "They violently dragged us back across the ice to North Korea and marched us to a nearby army base, where we were detained."

The Op-Ed was published on Tuesday night and in the newspaper Wednesday. It is also being made available to other publications through the Los Angeles Times-Washington Post news service.

The women were held in Pyongyang, during which they were convicted of "hostile acts" against North Korea and sentenced to 12 years of hard labor. They were released in August after former President Bill Clinton met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Il.


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