North Korea to deport US citizen it says the CIA manipulated as it claims new 'high-tech tactical weapon'

Korea Summit Press Pool/Getty ImagesNorth Korean Leader Kim Jong Un speaks during the Inter-Korean Summit at the Peace House on April 27, 2018 in Panmunjom, South Korea.
  • North Korea on Friday said it was deporting a US citizen who entered the country illegally in October.
  • The announcement came after the rogue state claimed it had “successfully” tested a new high-tech weapon.
  • The detained American was identified as Bruce Byron Lowrance.
  • Lowrance’s deportation is seemingly designed to appease the US government, even as North Korea continues to take provocative military actions amid ongoing talks with the US about denuclearization.

North Korea on Friday said it was deporting a US citizen who entered the country illegally in October. The announcement came as the rogue state also claimed it had “successfully” tested a new high-tech weapon.

The detained American was identified as Bruce Byron Lowrance by North Korean state news, which also claimed he’d been under the “manipulation” of the CIA and entered the country via China, The New York Times reported.

It’s not clear when Lowrance will be deported.

North Korea has detained Americans for long periods of time, infuriating the US government in the process. The most well-known case is perhaps that of Otto Warmbier, an American student who died last year shortly after being released from North Korean custody. Warmbier had been in captivity for roughly 17 months.


Read more: North Korea says it has ‘successfully’ tested a new ‘high-tech tactical weapon’

The deportation of Lowrance is seemingly designed to appease the US government, even as North Korea continues to take provocative military actions amid ongoing talks with the US about denuclearization.

President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un met in Singapore over the summer to discuss Pyongyang’s nuclear program. Roughly two months before their landmark summit,Trump secured the release of three US citizens who were held captive by North Korea.

Trump has maintained that North Korea no longer poses a nuclear threat, but critics feel he’s embellished the success of his dealings with Kim and been too amicable toward a leader who is widely considered among the most oppressive worldwide. The UN’s nuclear watchdog in August said North Korea was continuing nuclear activity.

Earlier on Friday, North Korea said it carried out successful tests of a high-tech tactical weapon” that state news described as “state-of-the-art.”


Read more: North Korea is hiding a vast network of secret missile bases in the mountains, satellite images show

Trump and Kim are set to meet for a second time, which Vice President Mike Pence discussed on Thursday. Pence said the US would not require Pyongyang to provide a complete list of its nuclear weapons and missile sites prior to the meeting. The US has been demanding this information for some time, but North Korea has been obstinate.

Pence told NBC News that “it will be absolutely imperative in this next summit that we come away with a plan for identifying all of the weapons in question, identifying all the development sites, allowing for inspections of the sites and the plan for dismantling nuclear weapons.”

“Now we need to see results,” Pence added.

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