US soldier Travis King BACK ON American soil after spending months in North Korea detention

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American soldier Travis King returned to United States soil on Thursday, September 28, for the first time since being detained by North Korean authorities in July, U.S. officials said.

Travis King in North Korean custody

King has been held by North Korean authorities since July 18, when he intentionally crossed into the Demilitarized Zone between North and South Korea. King spent 71 days in North Korean custody.

The North Korean government announced Wednesday that it ‘decided to expel’ U.S. Army Private Travis King, returning him to U.S. custody.

He was initially taken to China and then flown to the U.S. following an initial medical exam.

On Thursday morning, a military flight carrying King landed at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, U.S. officials said.

King, 23, is expected to be transported to the Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas for further mental and physical exams.

What punishment awaits Travis King

His release by North Korea does not end his troubles as he has been declared AWOL from the Army, which can be punished by detention in military jail, forfeiture of pay or a dishonorable discharge.

The National Security Council confirmed King’s return to U.S. custody in a call on Wednesday.

‘U.S. officials have secured the return of Private Travis King from the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK),’ said Pentagon Spokesperson Brigadier Gen Patrick Ryder.

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He added: ‘We appreciate the hard work of personnel in the Army, United States Forces Korea, and across the Department of Defense to bring Private King home, and we thank the governments of Sweden and the People’s Republic of China (PRC) for their assistance.’

Travis King on American soil

On Wednesday, Swedish officials took King to the Chinese border, where he was met by the U.S. Ambassador to China Nicholas Burns, the Swedish ambassador to China, and at least one U.S. Defense Department official.

King’s mother, Claudine Gates, said she would be ‘forever grateful’ for his safe return.

‘Ms. Gates will be forever grateful to the United States Army and all its interagency partners for a job well done,’ said Jonathan Franks, the spokesman for King’s mother.

‘For the foreseeable future, the family asks for privacy and Ms. Gates does not intend to give any interviews.’

During King’s detainment, U.S. officials were not allowed to communicate with him or inquire about why he crossed into North Korea in the first place.

Last month, North Korean state media reported King decided to cross into the totalitarian country because of ‘inhuman maltreatment and racial discrimination within the U.S. Army.’

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Ola Alabi
Ola Moses is a certified writer, He writes technically and creatively. He is the CEO of WORDSWORTH, a house where writing is made easier for all. He is a content creator at EsB TV, since 2019. He is a young man that showcases professionalism in all that he does, he was announced as Child and Green Foundation Person of the Year 2018, one of his many lists of honours.

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