North Korea has threatened to launch a series of retaliations on the United States and South Korean intelligence agencies after an alleged assassination attempt on its leader, Kim Jong-Un.
The detained victim, named Kim Hak-song, worked at the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology, the same university where USA citizen, Tony Kim, worked. North Korea said Kim Sang-dok was arrested "for committing criminal acts", but did not elaborate.
The U.S. State Department said on Monday that it was aware of the reports about Kim Hak Song's arrest, but could not comment further due to "privacy considerations".
The tension between totalitarian state North Korea and the United States seem to escalate even further now that the North detained yet another US citizen. It says he is a North Korean resident of Pyongyang who worked for a time in the Russian Far East.
An official of the US State Department said the detentions underscored 'the risk associated with travel to North Korea'.
North Korea said on Sunday it has detained another USA citizen on suspicion of "hostile acts" against the state, which would make him the fourth American to be held by the isolated country amid heightened diplomatic tensions with Washington.
"The security of USA citizens is one of the Department's highest priorities", it was said in a statement.
"The new Mission Center draws on experienced officers from across the Agency and integrates them in one entity to bring their expertise and creativity to bear against the North Korea target".
Two weeks ago the North arrested Tony Kim, a United States citizen and accounting professor who was lecturing at PUST, accusing him of trying to "overturn" the regime.
According to Japan Times, this is just one of a number of plans the Trump administration has been discussing with the Chinese officials regarding North Korea and its continued pursuit of nuclear weapons. Just last week, North Korea state media published an 1,800-word report accusing the US and South Korea of plotting to kill leader Kim Jong Un. He became a naturalized USA citizen more than a decade ago.
In a statement, Pyongyang University of Science and Technology said Kim was doing agricultural development work with the university's agricultural farm. They were later freed after former U.S. President Bill Clinton visited Pyongyang.
According to the spokesperson, South Korea then infiltrated the "human scum" into North Korea, with instructions a year ago on how to assassinate Mr. Kim. "He was a very diligent, hardworking man determined to help people in North Korea", he said.
Last year, North Korea sentenced Otto Warmbier, a University of Virginia student, to 15 years of hard labor.
The government in Pyongyang has accused US Senator Cory Gardner of "wicked blasphemy" over the weekend after the Republican from Colorado referred to Kim as a "whack job" and a 'crazed maniac, ' according to UPI.
Kim Dong Chul, a South Korean-born US citizen told CNN he was president of a trade and hotel services company in Rason, North Korea.