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North Korea has announced that it is preparing to put two American tourists on trial for carrying out what Pyongyang says were hostile acts against the country.
Matthew Todd Miller and Jeffrey Edward Fowle were detained nearly three weeks apart in April. North Korean authorities have not specified what the two did that was considered hostile or illegal, or what kind of punishment they might face. It also did not say when the trial would begin.
"Their hostile acts were confirmed by evidence and their own testimonies," read a partial statement from the official Korean Central News Agency.
Fowle arrived in the county on April 29. North Korea's state media said in June that authorities were investigating him for committing acts inconsistent with the purpose of a tourist visit.
Diplomatic sources said Fowle was detained for leaving the Bible in his hotel room. But a spokesman for Fowle's family said the 56-year-old from Ohio was not on a mission for his church.
North Korea said Miller Matthew Todd had a tourist visa for the country but tore it to pieces and shouted that he had come "to the DPRK after choosing it as a shelter."
Officials said it had detained Too for "a gross violation of its legal order."
The official Korean Central News Agency identified him as Jeffrey Edwards Fowle.
North Korea, which has no diplomatic relations with the United States, said it had detained Mr Fowle for “hostile activities” and was questioning him.
Japanese news agency Kyodo, citing diplomatic sources, said the detainee had been part of a tour group and was held in mid-May after he left a Bible at a hotel.
“American citizen Jeffrey Edward Fowle entered the DPRK as a tourist on April 29 and acted in violation of the DPRK law, contrary to the purpose of tourism during his stay,” KCNA reported, referring to the country’s official name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.