February 17, 2016 5:35 am
Updated: February 17, 2016 5:36 am

Vigil planned at Parliament Hill for pastor held in North Korean prison

WATCH ABOVE: Hyeon Soo Lim, the head pastor at one of Canada's biggest churches, has been convicted of what's being called "heinous crimes," and harming the dignity of the supreme leader in North Korea. As Jennifer Tryon reports, Canadian officials haven't been able to meet with Lim.


OTTAWA – Hundreds of supporters of a Canadian pastor serving a life sentence in North Korea are to demonstrate on Parliament Hill today to urge the government to press for his release.

Hyeon Soo Lim, a pastor with the Light Korean Presbyterian Church of Mississauga, Ont., was sentenced by a North Korean court to life in prison at hard labour for what it called crimes against the state.

Among other things, he was charged with harming the dignity of North Korea’s supreme leader and trying to use religion to destroy the country’s system.

Last month, CNN was granted extraordinary access to Lim and broadcast a televised interview in which he described his eight-hour-a-day, six-day-a-week regime of hard labour and said his North Korean jailers had yet to honour his request for a Bible.

Richard Ha, a spokesman for his church, told The Canadian Press that Lim steered clear of politics on previous trips to North Korea.

He said he was focused on helping orphans and others living in poverty.

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