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FILE - This 1988 file photo provided by Bobby Lee shows Kenneth Bae, right, and Bobby Lee together when they were freshmen students at the University of Oregon. North Korea says a Kenneth Bae, who was sentenced to 15 years' hard labour, smuggled in unspecified inflammatory literature and tried to establish a base for anti-Pyongyang activities at a hotel in the border city of Rason. The statement late Thursday, May 9, 2013 from an unidentified Supreme Court spokesman, provides the most in-depth look so far of Pyongyang's allegations against Kenneth Bae. Analysts say Pyongyang may be using Bae as bait to gain direct talks with Washington.
PYONGYANG, North Korea—A North Korean academic says an American sentenced to 15 years' hard labor has called his family and urged Washington to push for his amnesty.

Ri Gyong Chol, section chief of the North Korean Academy of Social Sciences' Institution of Law, also told The Associated Press Sunday that Kenneth Bae informed his family on Friday that he couldn't appeal his April 30 sentence.

Ri's information came from authorities in charge of Bae's case. Washington has called for Bae's release.

North Korea accuses Bae of trying to establish an anti-Pyongyang base in the North. There's been no statement from Bae.

Pyongyang denies speculation by outside analysts that it is using Bae to win diplomatic concessions.

Several other detained Americans have been released in recent years after prominent Americans traveled to Pyongyang.


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