Laura Ling and Euna Lee are headed back the U.S. with Bill Clinton
In this photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency, American journalists Laura Ling, left, and Euna Lee, second right, walk to a chartered plane at an airport in Pyongyang, North Korea on Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2009. Former U.S. President Bill Clinton left Pyongyang early Wednesday accompanied by Lee and Ling after North Korean leader Kim Jong Il pardoned the two from their 12-year prison sentences.
(AP Photo/Xinhua, Zhang Binyang)
Former U.S. President Bill Clinton greets U.S. journalists Laura Ling (in green) and Euna Lee (in red) as they board a chartered plane at an airport in Pyongyang August 5, 2009 in this photo released by China's official Xinhua News Agency. North Korea said on Wednesday it had pardoned the two jailed American journalists after Clinton met the reclusive state's leader Kim Jong-il, a move some analysts said could pave the way to direct nuclear disarmament talks. REUTERS/Xinhua/Zhang Binyang
Statement by the President on the release of Laura Ling and Euna Lee
For Immediate Release August 5, 2009
STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT ON THE RELEASE OF LAURA LING AND EUNA LEE
9:37 A.M. EDT
THE PRESIDENT: Good morning, everybody. I want to just make a brief comment about the fact that the two young journalists, Euna Lee and Laura Ling, are safely back with their families. We are obviously extraordinarily relieved. I had an opportunity to speak with the families yesterday once we knew that they were on the plane.
The reunion that we've all seen on television I think is a source of happiness not only for the families but for the entire country.
I want to thank President Bill Clinton -- I had a chance to talk to him -- for the extraordinary humanitarian effort that resulted in the release of the two journalists. I want to thank Vice President Al Gore who worked tirelessly in order to achieve a positive outcome.
I think that not only is this White House obviously extraordinarily happy, but all Americans should be grateful to both former President Clinton and Vice President Gore for their extraordinary work. And my hope is, is that the families that have been reunited can enjoy the next several days and weeks, understanding that because of the efforts of President Clinton and Gore, they are able to be with each other once again.
So we are very pleased with the outcome, and I'm hopeful that the families are going to be able to get some good time together in the next...
Freed journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee are home at last.
After 140 long days into the North Korean nightmare of American journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee, an unexpected visitor arrived, former President Bill Clinton.
On Tuesday, August 4 in a surprise move, ex-President Bill Clinton flew to Pyongyang on a private mission to bring Laura Ling and Euna Lee home.
He traveled as a private citizen on a humanitarian mission.
Although not an official government sanctioned visit, Clinton was greeted by Yang Hyong Sop, Vice-President of the Presidium of the Supreme Peoples Assembly, and Kim Kye Gwan, Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs, and was presented with flowers by a young Korean girl.
After meeting with Kim Jong-il, the reclusive Korean leader granted a special pardon to Laura Ling and Euna Lee.
Shortly, thereafter, they were on a plane headed for the U.S.
On March 17 Ling and Lee were detained in North Korea while on assignment for San Francisco-based Current TV a media venture founded by former Vice President Al Gore.
Ling and Lee were stopped and later arrested by North Korean border guards while they were shooting video along the China/North Korea border for a story they were working on about the trafficking of women in the region.
Both women were transported to Pyongyang, the capital of North Korea, where they remained under arrest until their trial.
They were found guilty on June 8 and sentenced to 12 years of reform through labor for illegal entry and grave crimes...
February 26, 2013
What?!! An Asian American male star in a Hollywood movie that isn't a Kung Fu film?
Justin Chon ("Twilight"), steps into the spotlight as the lead character in the comedy 21 and Over, opening in theaters nationwide March 1.
Chon, 31, was born in Garden Grove in Orange County, California, and was raised in Irvine, California. He attended business school at the University of Southern California. At age 20, Chon began taking acting lessons, inspired by growing up watching his father in black and white films. His father is a former child actor from South Korea.
AsianConnections' Suzanne Joe Kai chatted with Justin about his new role, breaking stereotypes, and what's next in his fast-rising career. (For the full interview transcript click on the blue headline link above.)
Justin: Hey Suzanne, thank you.
Suzanne: You’re right from Orange County, California!
Justin: Yeah, Irvine. Yeah, born and raised. I was born in Garden Grove Hospital.
Suzanne: Can you describe your role in your new film 21 and Over coming out in theaters March 1, 2013?
Justin: Yeah. I play a character named Jeff Chang. It's his 21st birthday and my two friends come up to celebrate with me but I have a medical school interview the next day. They convinced me to have one beer and obviously that beer turns into absolute chaos. My character's just an average kid. He's actually not that...
Statement of Shon Meckfessel on Missing U.S. Hikers
New America Media, Commentary, Shon Meckfessel, Posted: Aug 06, 2009
Editors Note: Three Americans, Shane Bauer, Sarah Shourd and Josh Fattal, have been missing since July 31 after hiking in Iraqi Kurdistan and are reportedly being held by Iranian authorities. Bauer is a correspondent for New America Media. A fourth member of their party, Shon Mecfessel, did not join them that day and has now offered his statement on events, which is published below.
I'm writing this statement to help people understand what happened to my three friends, Shane Bauer, Sarah Shourd and Josh Fattal, who went missing by the Iran/Iraq border. I have been close friends with Shane and Sarah for years, and recently met Josh, a longtime friend of Shane. Shane is a language student and freelance journalist; Sarah is an English teacher, and Josh arranges student exchange trips. All of us have done some writing about our travels, and all of us share a deep appreciation for Middle Eastern cultures.
In late July the four of us decided to travel from Damascus, Syria to Iraqi Kurdistan for a short vacation. Sarah had to return to work in a week. While going there might seem strange to Americans, the Kurdish territory is actually very beautiful and quite safe. Since the Kurds gained autonomy in 1992, no American has ever been harmed there. The city of Sulaimania is increasingly popular with tourists, and a friend of ours told us it was the most beautiful...