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American in North Korea Said to Denounce U.S.

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A Texas man who apparently entered North Korea illegally earlier this year has denounced American foreign policy in a lengthy news conference, according to a report Sunday, and plans to seek asylum in Venezuela.

The man, who identified himself as Arturo Pierre Martinez, 29, claimed he ventured into the reclusive country to provide what he described as “very valuable and disturbing information” regarding the U.S. to authorities in the isolated country, according to Reuters, citing footage of the statement released by North Korea’s state-run news agency. Martinez, who said he has been living in a hotel, thanked authorities for treating him well.

Martinez’s mother, Patricia Eugenia Martinez, told CNN that her son is mentally unstable and had attempted to enter North Korea before.

The State Department acknowledged Sunday that it was aware of the situation and was ready “to provide all possible consular assistance.” A statement from Deputy Spokesperson Marie Harf neither confirmed Martinez’s identity, nor noted his comments.


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