North Korea says it will expel a US soldier who crossed into the country through the heavily armed border between the Koreas in July.
The North’s official Korean Central News Agency says authorities have finished their questioning of Pvt. Travis King. It does not say when officials plan to expel him or to where.
King, who had served in South Korea, sprinted into North Korea while on a civilian tour of a border village on July 18, becoming the first American confirmed to be detained in the North in nearly five years. He was supposed to be heading to Fort Bliss, Texas, following his release from prison in South Korea on an assault conviction.
The state news agency says King confessed to illegally entering the North because he harbored “ill feeling against inhuman maltreatment and racial discrimination” within the US Army and was “disillusioned about the unequal US society.”
It has attributed similar comments to King before, and verifying their authenticity is impossible.
“The relevant organ of the DPRK decided to expel Travis King, a soldier of the US Army who illegally intruded into the territory of the DPRK,” the state news agency says, using the initials of North Korea’s formal name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.
The White House, the State Department and the Pentagon do not have any immediate comment on the report.