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Securing release of 3 U.S. detainees in N.Korea is a top priority: White House

File - This combination of file photos shows US citizens Jeffre Fowle(L), in a handout photo obtained June 10, 2014 courtesy of the City of Moraine, Ohio and Kenneth Bae, seen in a handout photo recieved from FreeKenNow.com on October 12, 2013. "AFP PHOTO / City of Moraine, Ohio(Left) and FreeKenNow.com(Right)"

WASHINGTON: The White House said on Monday it was continuing to do all that it can to secure the release of three Americans detained in North Korea, after they made a televised appeal for help from the U.S. government.

The three spoke to the cable channel CNN on Monday, with one of the prisoners saying his health was failing and another describing his situation as "urgent."

"We have seen the reports of interviews with the three American citizens detained in North Korea," Patrick Ventrell, a spokesman for the White House National Security Council, said in a statement.

"Securing the release of U.S. citizens is a top priority and we have followed these cases closely in the White House. We continue to do all we can to secure their earliest possible release," he said.

 

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