Australia says no progress in finding student feared detained in North Korea

By Colin Packham SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Friday Canberra has yet to establish the whereabouts of an Australian man missing in North Korea for several days.The family of Alek Sigley said on Thursday they had not heard from the 29-year-old university student in Pyongyang, the North Korean capital, since Tuesday. Australia's foreign affairs department said on Thursday it was seeking urgent clarification about reports that an Australian had been detained in North Korea

Reuters June 28, 2019 06:07:38 IST
Australia says no progress in finding student feared detained in North Korea

Australia says no progress in finding student feared detained in North Korea

By Colin Packham

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Friday Canberra has yet to establish the whereabouts of an Australian man missing in North Korea for several days.The family of Alek Sigley said on Thursday they had not heard from the 29-year-old university student in Pyongyang, the North Korean capital, since Tuesday.

Australia's foreign affairs department said on Thursday it was seeking urgent clarification about reports that an Australian had been detained in North Korea.

Australia has no diplomatic presence in North Korea and relies on third-party countries such as Sweden to act on its behalf. Morrison said Australia has been unable to establish what happened to Sigley despite the help of its allies.

"We don't have any further information," Morrison told Australia's Channel 9 in Osaka, where he is attending the G20 summit of world leaders.

"It's very concerning, I'm very concerned," he said.

The treatment of foreign citizens, most usually from the United States, by the secretive North has long been a contentious issue. Some have been held as prisoners for years.

The death of American student Otto Warmbier in 2017 after he was detained in North Korea for 17 months sparked a long period of tension between Washington and Pyongyang, with the United States and North Korea even trading threats of war.

Warmbier was detained in 2016 and sentenced to 15 years of forced labour for trying to steal a propaganda poster in his hotel. He was returned to the United States in a coma and died soon after.

The United States imposed a ban on its citizens travelling to North Korea in September 2017, with a few exceptions for humanitarian workers or journalists.

Those tensions were relieved somewhat by an historic meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore a year ago to discuss the North's nuclear and missiles programmes.

The problems remain unresolved, however, after a failed second summit in Hanoi this year.

(Reporting by Colin Packham; Editing by Paul Tait)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

Cargo from Dubai arrives in Haifa, cementing Israel-UAE trade route
Business

Cargo from Dubai arrives in Haifa, cementing Israel-UAE trade route

By Rami Amichay HAIFA, Israel (Reuters) - The ship-to-shore crane paused above the cargo ship just arrived from Dubai, then set its load down on the pier in Israel.

As globe gallops into vaccine trials, insurers remain unfazed
Business

As globe gallops into vaccine trials, insurers remain unfazed

By Noor Zainab Hussain, Carolyn Cohn and Ludwig Burger LONDON/FRANKFURT (Reuters) - The world is racing towards a vaccine in record time, stirring public concerns about safety to the extent that nine leading developers have felt compelled to issue a pledge to uphold scientific standards and testing rigour. Yet, while more than 40 experimental COVID-19 vaccines are being tested on humans, the insurance companies with decades of experience in assessing the risks of clinical trials don't see anything to be unduly concerned about.

EU watchdog to clarify share trading after full Brexit
Business

EU watchdog to clarify share trading after full Brexit

By Huw Jones LONDON (Reuters) - The European Union's securities watchdog said it expects to make a statement soon on where shares listed in the bloc must be traded after Britain's full departure from the European Union in December.