Bill Clinton save the day []

“Thirty hours ago, Euna Lee and I were prisoners in North Korea,” Ms. Ling said in brief remarks to reporters, blinking back tears. “We feared that at any moment we could be prisoners in a hard labor camp. Then suddenly we were told that we were going to a meeting. “We were taken to a location and when we walked through the doors, we saw standing before us President Bill Clinton,” she said, recounting the final moments of her ordeal. “We were shocked, but we knew instantly in our hearts that the nightmare of our lives was finally coming to an end. And now we stand here home and free.”

The two women stepped off the plane in jeans and sweaters, rushing down the stairs to be reunited with their families, who clustered around them. Ms. Lee, in tears, picked up and embraced her 4-year-old daughter, Hana. Mr. Clinton stepped off the plane a few moments later, embracing Al Gore, the founder of the media company that employs the journalists.

President Obama, who contacted the families of the women on Tuesday evening, said that he, too, was “extraordinarily relieved” at the journalists’ return.

“I want to thank President Bill Clinton — I had a chance to talk to him — for the extraordinary humanitarian effort that resulted in the release of the two journalists,” Mr. Obama said outside the White House on Wednesday morning.

Mr. Clinton’s mission to Pyongyang was the most visible by an American in nearly a decade. It came at a time when the United States’ relationship with North Korea had become especially chilled, after North Korea’s test of its second nuclear device in May and a series of missile launchings.

It ended a harrowing ordeal for the two women, who were stopped on March 17 by soldiers near North Korea’s border with China while researching a report about women and human trafficking.

Mrs. Hillary Clinton was deeply involved in the case, too. She proposed sending various people to Pyongyang — including Mr. Clinton’s vice president, Al Gore — to lobby for the release of the women, before Mr. Clinton emerged as the preferred choice of the North Koreans, people briefed on the talks said.

Thank you for that, Mr Clinton, and hopefully you will carry on helping people all over the world ( as you do with your foundation in Africa and Asia).



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