Missionary Once Held by N. Korea Back in U.S.

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The American missionary arrested for illegally entering North Korea on Christmas Day is back in the U.S.

Robert Park, 28, was greeted by his family in Los Angeles Feb. 6.

Initial reports described him as "pale and drawn" but his brother, Paul, said Park is in good condition after being held for 43 days.

Park was arrested after crossing the frozen Tumen River into North Korea carrying letters to bring light to the country's human rights issues.

Before his release, the Korean Central News Agency reported that Park retracted his "biased" opinion on North Korea's policies, saying his Bible was returned to him and he was able to attend a church service while in custody.

"I would not have committed such crime if I had known that the [North] respects the rights of all the people and guarantees their freedom and they enjoy a happy and stable life," the news report quoted Park saying.

Rev. John Benson, the Arizona pastor who ordained Park as a missionary, said the statements sounded like "propaganda."

"It totally did not sound like Robert at all," Benson said.

For now, Park's family is just happy to have him home.

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