Former ‘View’ Host’s Sister Held Captive

by | June 1, 2009 at 3:36 PM | TV News

Lisa Ling was on ‘The Today Show‘ Monday speaking out for the first time on her sister’s 76-day detention by North Korea: “We are terrified.”

American journalists Laura Ling, 32, and Euna Lee were arrested by Korean soldiers March 17th near the North Korea/China border and are charged with entering the country illegally and unspecified “hostile acts.”

On assignment for Current TV, Ling and Lee were doing a story about refugees.

Ling and Lee’s families broke their silence on their loved ones–they’ve been accused of espionage–to lobby support for the pair, who stand trial in Pyongyang this Thursday, June 4th. If convicted, the women could face 5 to 10 years in one of North Korea’s “notoriously grim labor camps.”

Lisa Ling told Matt Lauer, “When they left this country, there was no intention of crossing the border.” It’s suspected the reporters are being held hostage as “bargaining chips” in a diplomatic standoff over nuclear talks.

The women have had limited contact with their families…a couple letters and one out-of-the-blue phone call last Tuesday.

“They are scared. They are very, very scared,” Lisa said. “We hadn’t heard their voices in over two and a half months. It’s been very emotional.”

Both families will also appear on ‘Larry King Live,’ while Lisa Ling is featured on tonight’s ‘Nightline.’