American Delegation Arrives in North Korea on Controversial Private Trip

SEOUL, South Korea — Bill Richardson, the former governor of New Mexico, led a private delegation including Eric Schmidt, Google’s executive chairman, to North Korea on Monday, a controversial trip to a country that is among the most hostile to the Internet.

Mr. Richardson, who has visited North Korea several times, called his four-day trip a private humanitarian mission and said he would try to meet with Kenneth Bae, a 44-year-old South Korea-born American citizen who was arrested on charges of “hostile acts” against North Korea after entering the country as a tourist in early November.

“I heard from his son who lives in Washington State, who asked me to bring him back,” Mr. Richardson said in Beijing before boarding a plane bound for Pyongyang. “I doubt we can do it on this trip.”

In a one-sentence dispatch, the North’s state-run Korean Central News Agency confirmed the American group’s arrival in Pyongyang, calling it “a Google delegation.”

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/08/world/asia/bill-richardson-and-eric-schmidt-of-google-visit-north-korea.html?_r=0

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