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BREAKING: British TV crew arrested in North Korea and interrogated for eight hours

Май 9, 2016    
BREAKING: British TV crew arrested in North Korea and interrogated for eight hours

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A BBC TV crew has been detained and interrogated in North Korea for "improper reportage" about Kim Jong-Un

An entire BBC crew, including Rupert Wingfield-Hayes, has been detained in Pyongyang and interrogated for an alleged inappropriate description of leader Kim Jong Un.

He was one of three BBC staff, along with producer Maria Byrne and cameraman Matthew Goddard, detained on Friday as they were about to leave North Korea.

Mr Wingfield-Hayes was singled out over some of his reports for TV and online.

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The world's media had been invited to attend a Workers' Party Conference, but journalists were ultimately being kept away from the venue and even bused to a wire-making factory during the main event.

Speaking live to BBC Radio 4, Seoul correspondent Stephen Evans, who is still in North Korea, said: "They were, as I understand, at the airport waiting to get on a flight.

"Just as they were about to board the flight, Rupert was held back.

"He was then taken to a hotel, a separate hotel to where we were and interrogated for eight hours."

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An interrogator told Mr Wingfield-Hayes he had been the official to prosecute Kenneth Bae — a Korean-American missionary who was sentenced to 15 years' hard labour in the country.

Mr Evans said that Mr Wingfield-Hayes was told to sign a confession confirming that his work had been inaccurate and the authorities were particularly concerned about two incidents.

In one, Mr Wingfield-Hayes had questioned whether a visit by VIPs to a hospital had been staged by the authorities to make it seem better than it was, and another one when a cameraman was asked to delete pictures.

He said he believed his three colleagues were currently at the airport waiting to leave.

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Another BBC correspondent in Pyongyang, John Sudworth, said in a broadcast report that there was "disagreement, a concern over the content of Rupert's reporting", including questioning the authenticity of a hospital.

"When he reached the airport on Friday, he was separated from the rest of his team, prevented from boarding that flight, taken to a hotel and interrogated by the security bureau here in Pyongyang before being made to sign a statement and then released, eventually allowed to rejoin us here in this hotel," Sudworth said in the report.

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