August 4, 2009 / 11:49 PM / 9 years ago

Clinton leaves North Korea with pardoned journalists

Photos of journalists Laura Ling (L) and Euna Lee displayed during a public vigil in San Francisco, June 24, 2009. REUTERS/Handout

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Former U.S. President Bill Clinton has departed North Korea with two American journalists newly released by North Korean leader Kim Jong-il after he granted the pair a “special pardon,” a spokesman for Clinton said on Tuesday.

“President Clinton has safely left North Korea with Laura Ling and Euna Lee. They are en route to Los Angeles, where Laura and Euna will be reunited with their families,” a statement from the spokesman, Matt McKenna, said.

Reporting by Steve Gorman, additional reporting by Jeremy Pelofsky in Washington, Editing by Sandra Maler

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