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Google chairman in North Korea visit

(ROUGH CUT ONLY - NO REPORTER NARRATION) Former New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson and Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt began a controversial private mission to North Korea on Monday (January 7) that will include an effort to secure the release of an imprisoned American. Footage filmed by North Korea's official media agency KCNA provided to Reuters showed Schmidt and Richardson visiting a e-library at Kim Il-Sung University on Tuesday (January 8) in Pyongyang. The trip comes after North Korea carried out a long-range rocket test last month and as, according to satellite imagery, the reclusive state continues work on its nuclear testing facilities, potentially paving the way for a third nuclear bomb test. The delegation comprised of Schmidt, his daughter, Richardson and Google executive Jared Cohen, South Korean news media said and it arrived in Pyongyang on a flight from the Chinese capital, Beijing. Richardson, a former ambassador to the United Nations, has made numerous trips to North Korea in the past that have included efforts to free detained Americans. The reasons for Schmidt's involvement in the trip are not clear, though Google characterised it as "personal" travel. Schmidt did not respond to requests for comment. The mission has been criticised by the United States due to the sensitivity of the timing. The United States does not have diplomatic relations with North Korea and the isolated and impoverished state remains technically at war with U.S. ally South Korea.

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