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North Korea Travel Ban Begins in September

Americans seeking permission to travel require “special validation passports.”

Travelers hoping to enter North Korea only have one more month to do so – assuming they can secure their travels in time. In a bulletin published in the Federal Register by the State Department, travel to the pariah nation with an American passport will be severely limited starting September 1, 2017.

“The Department of State has determined that the serious risk to United States nationals of arrest and long-term detention represents imminent danger to the physical safety of United States nationals traveling to and within the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea,” the bulletin published in the Federal Register reads. “The Department of State is declaring all U.S. passports invalid for travel to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) unless the travel meets certain criteria.”

The move to restrict travel to North Korea was made after the death of Otto Warmbier, an American student who was imprisoned after removing a propaganda poster. According to CNN, he was among three other Americans held by the regime. The United States does not maintain an embassy or consulate, leaving only the Swedish embassy as the protecting power for American visitors.

Although travel into the nation will be severely limited, special waivers will be allowed for journalists and humanitarian workers traveling to the nation. Those who wish to travel under one of these exceptions must receive a “special validation passport” from the State Department.

[Photo: Shutterstock]

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