U.S. Student ‘Confesses’ in N. Korea

An American student detained in North Korea appeared on state-run television Monday to “confess” to attempting to steal a banner emblazoned with a propaganda slogan that was hanging at his Pyongyang hotel. Otto Frederick Warmbier, a 21-year-old University of Virginia student, was detained before boarding his flight to China in January. He said a member of a church offered him a used car worth $10,000 if he could bring home the banner as a “trophy” from North Korea, the North’s KCNA news agency quoted Warmbier as saying. The church member also allegedly said the church would pay his mother $200,000 if he was held by Pyongyang and did not return, according to the Hermit Kingdom’s news service. The U.S. State Department said it was aware of the situation but declined to comment over “privacy considerations.”