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North Koreans leave China

BEIJING: Forty-four North Koreans who spent three months in the Canadian Embassy in China's biggest known asylum bid to date have been allowed to leave the country, an embassy spokesman said on Thursday. The asylum-seekers, who used ladders to scale the compound's spiked fence in September, were ``recently released'' and left for a third country, said a spokesman. He would not say when they left, where they were going or whether the third country was the final destination. ``I think that their state of mind was good. They were in good shape and ready to carry on the next part of their journey.'' Most of the hundreds of North Koreans who have sought asylum in embassies, schools and other foreign offices in China over the past three years have eventually headed for South Korea.

AP

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