North Korea has revealed it detained an American man at the end of April for committing “hostile acts with an aim to subvert the country.”
A report by the country’s state-run KCNA news agency added that officials were conducting an investigation into Kim Sang-duk, who was arrested at Pyongyang airport.
The detainee, also known as Tony Kim, had been teaching accounting at Pyongyang University of Science and Technology.
It appears he is the man whose arrest was announced by KCNA on April 22. However it is currently unclear exactly what his “hostile acts” were.
Kim’s arrest follows the detention and punishment of two other American citizens by North Korea last year.
Virginia student Otto Warmbier was sentenced to 15 years’ hard labour for attempting to steal a propaganda leaflet, while Kim Dong Chul, who was born in South Korea but is believed to hold US citizenship, received 10 years in jail for espionage.
Tensions between Pyongyang and Washington have continued to rise in recent weeks, driven in part by the hawkish stance taken by new US President Donald Trump.
Last month the North Korean army performed a huge military parade to mark the country’s ‘Day of the Sun’, the most venerated day in the Communist Party’s calendar, while officials said they had the means to meet any US aggression immediately.
However Trump has since attempted to extend an olive branch to Pyongyang, suggesting he is prepared to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong-un at an appropriate time.