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US student David Sneddon was 'kidnapped by North Korea and forced to teach English'

Published 02/09/2016

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un waves from a balcony of the Grand People's Study House following a mass parade marking the end of the 7th Workers Party Congress in Kim Il-Sung Square in Pyongyang on May 10, 2016.
North Korea kicked off a massive parade in the centre of Pyongyang on May 10 to celebrate a just-concluded ruling party congress that was seen as a formal coronation for supreme leader Kim Jong-Un. / AFP PHOTO / Ed JonesED JONES/AFP/Getty Images
North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un waves from a balcony of the Grand People's Study House following a mass parade marking the end of the 7th Workers Party Congress in Kim Il-Sung Square in Pyongyang on May 10, 2016. North Korea kicked off a massive parade in the centre of Pyongyang on May 10 to celebrate a just-concluded ruling party congress that was seen as a formal coronation for supreme leader Kim Jong-Un. / AFP PHOTO / Ed JonesED JONES/AFP/Getty Images

US student David Sneddon, who was first reported missing in 2004, was actually kidnapped and forced to teach English in North Korea, according to authorities.

Sneddon, disappeared while hiking in the Yunnan Province in China. The student, who is fluent in Korean, was just 24 at the time.

Police initially said that Sneddon had died in a hiking accident, but no body was ever found.

David's parents were always suspicious.

“We knew in our heart that he was alive, so we had to keep fighting,” his mother, Kathleen Sneddon told the New York Post.

According to Choi Sung-yong, the head of South Korea's Abductee's Family Union, Sneddon has been found living in North Korea where he is being forced to work as a school teacher.

According to reports, he lives in Pyongyang and is married with two children.

David's parents believe he was kidnapped because of a previous visit to South Korea, where his language skills became known.

It remains unclear why Sneddon never contacted his parents or US officials.

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