Laura Ling and Euna Lee, two American journalists, were recently sentenced to 12 years of prison in North Korea.
On March 17, 2009, Laura and Euna were shooting video along the China/North Korea border for a story they were working on about the trafficking of women in the region. They were stopped by North Korean border guards and arrested immediately thereafter. Both women were transported to Pyongyang, the capital of North Korea, where they remained under arrest until their trial.
A verdict in their closed trial was reached on June 8, and both Laura and Euna were sentenced to 12 years of reform through labor for illegal entry and grave crimes against the North Korean state.
Since the sentencing, the families have been able to receive calls on a few occasions. During the second call received on the evening of July 7, Laura and Euna reported that they are being treated fairly and are being seen by physicians. In the most recent call, they asked for continued support from our country and its citizens for their amnesty.
Urge the government of North Korea to grant amnesty to Laura Ling and Euna Lee!
To the government of North Korea:
North Korean authorities sentenced two U.S. journalists, Laura Ling and Euna Lee, to 12 years imprisonment with hard labor.
This sentence was harsher than many observers expected and completely out of line with any of the accusations that your country leveled against them.
Both Laura and Euna communicated to their families that they did violate North Korean law and confessed to all of the charges levied against them. They, along with their families, have expressed deep regret for their actions.
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Please grant amnesty to Laura Ling and Euna Lee.
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