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US reporters detained by DPRK

SOLDIERS from the Democratic People's Republic of Korea detained two American journalists near the country's border, news reports from the Republic of Korea and a missionary said yesterday.

The journalists ?? Laura Ling and Euna Lee, reporters for former United States Vice President Al Gore's San Francisco-based online media outlet Current TV ?? were taken into custody on Tuesday, a missionary who had spoken to them earlier that day said.

The Reverend Chun Ki-won of the Seoul-based Durihana Mission said by phone from Washington that he was told the two women were detained with a guide.

Chun, a South Korean activist who helps DPRK refugees seek asylum, refused to reveal his sources.

In Washington, an official said the State Department was aware of reports that two American citizens were taken into custody near the Tumen River in northeast North Korea.

Chun, providing the reporters' identities, said he met the two in Seoul recently to help them plan their trip to the border to report on North Korean refugees and last spoke to them by phone on Tuesday morning.

Current TV, co-founded by Al Gore, devotes much of its programming to viewer-created short programs called "pods."


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