Tag Archives: Laura Ling

“Amnesty! – Send them home!” – Report of a Vigil Held for Euna Lee and Laura Ling in Sacramento

(A report of a rally for Euna Lee and Laura Ling at the Capitol on Thursday. It is vitally important that we stress the importance of journalistic freedoms and get these two home. – promoted by Brian Leubitz)

For the third time in just under four months, Lisa Ling had the privilege of hearing her sister’s voice. On Tuesday night, Laura Ling phoned home to say that there is only one way for her and Euna Lee to be released from North Korea before their 12 year sentence is complete – the United States government must ask the North Korea government for Amnesty. (More back history in this Calitics diary.)

Hence the theme of the evening at the West Steps of the Capitol on Thursday night. Yellow Ribbons speckled the crowd to show solidarity for the amnesty movement. About 300 people gathered, many shouting “Amnesty! – Send them home!” Signs read “Free Euna Lee and Laura Ling.” Senate Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg and Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner emphasized the same message in their speeches.

(A representative on behalf of Arnold Schwarzenegger also spoke. He promised the crowd that the State was working with the Federal government. A great sigh of relief washed over the crowd as they relaxed in knowing that the Governor was working on fixing this mess. Or not.)

What can the average Calitics reader do to help? Senator Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg answered this question succinctly with the following points:

  • Be vocal.
  • Keep pushing for our government to ask for amnesty and Laura and Euna’s release.
  • Focus on:

    1. Freedom – and the appreciation of the freedoms we do have here
    2. Hope – as this helps sustain people, both family members here and Euna and Laura abroad.
    3. Mercy

Other concrete action items are listed here.

Perhaps the most heart felt moment was when the Ling’s father spoke, stating “If Laura can hear me, my heart says I love her and I miss her.”

Please Help Euna Lee and Laura Ling Get Released From North Korea

Taking a short break from the budget for this special request…

While the case of Roxana Saberi stirred enough attention in the media to extract her release from Iran, the similar case of two journalists detained in North Korea since March has not been given the same level of notoreity.  The Current TV journalists and San Francisco residents, Euna Lee and Laura Ling, will stand trial for “hostile acts” against the DPRK on Thursday, and their families are speaking out after months of silence, calling for the United States to work for the girls’ release.

“Our families have been quiet because the situation is very sensitive and we’ve been really trying to allow diplomacy to take its course,” Lisa Ling, Laura’s sister, said on CNN’s “Larry King Live” on Monday night. “But you know, you’d have to be hiding under a rock not to see what’s going on in the Korean Peninsula.

“I mean tensions are so heated,” she continued, “and the girls are essentially in the midst of this nuclear standoff.”

Late last month, North Korea conducted nuclear and missile tests, drawing the condemnation of the U.N. Security Council.

“We just felt like it was time for us to talk publicly and try and encourage our two governments to try to communicate, to try and bring our situation to a resolution on humanitarian grounds — to separate the issues,” said Ling, who is a special correspondent with CNN.

As I may have mentioned before, I actually know Euna Lee.  I worked with her briefly when I lived in San Francisco.  And I encourage everyone to speak out and intensify the international spotlight on this issue.  The two journalists have basically become bargaining chips, as the North Koreans continue their nuclear and missile tests and generally behave belligerently toward the West.  We need to extricate themselves from this so they are not caught in the crossfire.

Some friends in San Francisco have put together some action items to help raise the profile of the case.  There’s a petition to release Lee and Ling on humanitarian grounds.  And today, there will be nationwide vigils in the US and Canada.  Find the vigil in your area at the Facebook site.

San Francisco

steps of City Hall, 6pm

Los Angeles

Wokcano, 1413 5th Street, Santa Monica, 6:30pm


L Wine Lounge & Urban Kitchen, 1801 L Street, 6:30pm

Please participate if you can.