Video released of Washington man held in North Korea

By Gabriel Spitzer

 A Lynwood man being held in a North Korean prison camp appears dejected but healthy in a recently released video. Kenneth Bae was convicted of working to bring down the North Korean government and sentenced to 15 years of hard labor. 

North Korean officials say Bae is being held in a special prison. Seattle-based author and North Korea expert Blaine Harden says it looks like Bae is getting better treatment than normal political prisoners there. 

Harden: "It's clear that he is eating and getting relatively decent treatment. The people who emerge from the political labor camps for North Korean political enemies, they are ragged, covered with lice and hungry. Desperately hungry."

Harden says five other Americans have been held prisoner in North Korea in the last five years. All were released, generally after intervention by high-profile Americans such as Presidents Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter. The video, released to CNN by a pro-North Korea group in Japan, seems timed to give the North bargaining power. Harden says the country has a pattern of belligerent actions followed by efforts to negotiate.
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