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China fishermen detained by NKorean boat released

Sunday - 5/20/2012, 9:41pm  ET

BEIJING (AP) - The Chinese Embassy in North Korea says Chinese fishermen detained there after their boats were hijacked have been released.

Chinese media said last week that a North Korean boat hijacked three boats with 29 Chinese fishermen on board on May 8. The media did not say who the captors were but said they demanded $190,000 for the fishermen's release.

A statement on the Chinese Embassy website Sunday said that vessels and crew have been freed and are on their way back to China.

It did not mention if a payment was made. No other details were provided.

It was unclear if a territorial dispute or piracy was behind the incident involving boats from the two communist-led nations. China is the North's biggest diplomatic ally and source of economic assistance.


(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)