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HomeLatest NewsNorth Korea to expel US soldier Travis King for border crossing.

North Korea to expel US soldier Travis King for border crossing.

Travis King, the U.S. Army private who intentionally ran across the border into North Korea this summer, is back in U.S. custody after being expelled by the isolated country. Pentagon spokesman Brig. Gen. Patrick Ryder confirmed the return of Private King from the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and expressed gratitude to the U.S. military personnel involved in bringing him home, as well as the governments of Sweden and China. The 23-year-old soldier crossed the heavily armed border during a public tour of the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea on July 18.

A statement from the state-run news agency KCNA claimed that King had confessed to “illegally intruding” into North Korean territory due to disillusionment with the Army’s treatment and racial discrimination, as well as inequality within American society. The United States has not yet officially responded to these claims. King, who had recently been released from a South Korean prison, was being escorted to the airport to possibly face further disciplinary action in the U.S. for violating part of the joint security agreement. However, he joined a commercial tour group bound for the Joint Security Area instead.

This incident comes during a period of heightened tension between North Korea, South Korea, and the U.S. Pyongyang has increased nuclear threats and conducted weapons tests, while North Korean leader Kim Jong Un recently held a summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Concerns have risen in the West that Kim may collaborate with Russia in supplying ammunition for the conflict in Ukraine in exchange for military technology or economic aid. King’s mother, Claudine Gates, refuted suggestions that her son defected due to dissatisfaction with the Army, stating that he had numerous reasons to come home.

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