North Korea frees imprisoned Canadian pastor

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has called for calm

The Korea Central News Agency, the communist state's official media outlet, reported that Hyeon Soo Lim, a Canadian civilian, was released on sick bail in line with the decision of the Central Court of the North.

South Korea-born Canadian pastor Hyeon Soo Lim stands during his trial at a North Korean court in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang December 16, 2015.

North Korea has released a Korean-Canadian pastor after detaining him for several years.

Lim, a Reverend at the Light Presbyterian Korean Church in Toronto, was sentenced to a life of hard labor by the North Korean regime in December of 2015 for numerous charges, including attempting to overthrow the North Korean government.

His family said they increased their efforts to get Lim released after Kim's regime freed American university student Otto Warmbier in June.

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The American, 23, was released from Pyongyang prison and sent to the U.S. with "food poisoning" but soon died.

At least three USA citizens remain in North Korean custody.

A spokesman for the PMO says Lim's health and well-being is of utmost importance as the Canadian government continues to engage on the case.

His supporters have said he was on a humanitarian mission to North Korea when he was detained. Warmbier arrived to the U.S.in a vegetative state and died six days after his release.

The delegation that arrived in North Korea today was headed by Daniel Jean, who serves as Justin Trudeau's national security advisor.

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His church had supported a nursing home, a nursery and an orphanage in North Korea since it began a mission there in 1996, when the country was in the grip of a starvation that killed thousands of people.

In an interview with CNN last year, the pastor said he usually spends eight hours a day digging holes in the prison where he has apparently not seen any other inmates.

North Korea has in the past attracted the attention of Washington and visits by high-profile Americans with the detention and release of United States citizens.

President Donald Trump warnedTuesday that North Korea's threats will be met with "fire and fury and, frankly, power the likes of which this world has never seen before".

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