North Korea plans sixth nuclear test

Speaking to the VOA Korean Service on Sunday, Kim Mi Ok said her husband was arrested as he tried to return to the couple's home in Dandong, China.

Washington is concerned about the recent detention of a fourth USA citizen in North Korea and is working with the Swedish Embassy in Pyongyang to resolve the issue, White House Spokesperson Sean Spicer said at a regular press briefing in the US capital on Monday. A day in Pyongyang can easily be a day without sunshine, but up to 5,000 tourists arrive each year, and perhaps a thousand of them are intrepid Americans.

South Korea, the US and others often accuse North Korea of using foreign detainees to wrest diplomatic concessions, which have sometimes involved high-profile Americans sent to secure the release of the Americans.

USA tourist Otto Warmbier is serving 15 years imprisonment with hard labor over the theft of a political propaganda poster in January 2016 and Kim Dong Chul, a Korean-American businessman, is serving 10 years on espionage charges.

Due to the "hostile" policy of the United States, North Korea maintains that it must develop nuclear weapons.

North Korea's official news agency KCNA said Kim was detained for "hostile acts", without elaborating.

The detention of Kim Hak-Song means that the North is now holding four USA nationals, with the two countries at loggerheads over Pyongyang's nuclear and missile ambitions.

"The security of USA citizens is one of the Department's highest priorities", it was said in a statement.

North Korea on Friday accused the US and South Korean spy agencies of an unsuccessful assassination attempt on leader Kim Jong Un involving biochemical weapons.

Two years before he was detained, Kim Hak Song raised money for his trip to North Korea from members of the Korean-language Sao Paulo Oriental Mission church in Brazil, according to his post on the church's website.

And Kim Dong Chul is serving 10 years of hard labor after being jailed on subversion charges. "The volunteer faculty of PUST, many of whom are evangelical Christians, has a curriculum that includes subjects once considered taboo in North Korea, such as capitalism", Reuters reports.

On Sunday, media reported that a fourth USA citizen was detained a day earlier by Pyongyang on suspicion of hostile acts.

He went to Pyongyang to devote himself to the development of North Korea's agricultural technology so that the North can be self-sufficient with food.

"Life on campus and the teaching at PUST is continuing as normal", said PUST.

The U.S. proposals center on four promises.

North Korean Defense Minister General, Pak Yong Sik, said his country was ready to use pre-emptive strikes to defend against "US imperialists", warning nuclear war could break out because of the "frantic war drills" last week.

Supporters said the legislation was meant to send a strong message to North Korea, amid global concern over the escalation of its nuclear program. South Korean-born Kim Dong Chul, a naturalized USA citizen, was convicted a month later and sentenced to 10 years hard labour - shortly after Washington levied more sanctions against Pyongyang in response to a missile test in February of that year.

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