The Cable

SEOUL (Reuters) - The U.S. government will ban U.S. citizens from traveling to North Korea after the death of a U.S. student arrested there while on a tour, a U.S. official and tour agencies that arrange trips to the country said on Friday.

The ban will be announced on July 27 and go into effect 30 days later, according to Koryo Tours, which bills itself on its website as experts in travel to unusual destinations, including North Korea. The Swedish embassy in Pyongyang, which handles consular affairs for the United States in the North, informed Koryo of the ban, but did not say how long it would last, the company said.

"But it does seem to be the case that in just over a month, it will be impossible for Americans to visit as tourists," Koryo Tours general manager Simon Cockrell told Reuters by telephone.

Another tour operator, Young Pioneer Tours, said on its website it had also been informed of the ban, citing the same date.

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