Defying State Dept, Richardson and Google Chief to Visit North Korea

'We're Not Representing the State Department,' Richardson Notes

by Jason Ditz, January 04, 2013

Former New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson and Google chief Eric Schmidt are rejecting US State Department warnings not to go to North Korea on a visit later this month, with Richardson terming the warnings misplaced and meaningless.

“I don’t work for the US government, neither does Eric Schmidt,” noted Richardson, who added that “we’re not representing the State Department, so they shouldn’t be that nervous.”

State Department spokesman Victoria Nuland warned that the timing of the visit was “unhelpful” and said that the department had repeatedly made them “well aware of our views” on their planned visit.

Richardson has been visiting North Korea off and on for about 15 years and negotiated the release of numerous US hostages. He says Schmidt is a personal friend and is accompanying him out of pure curiosity.

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