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May 3rd, 2013
01:10 AM ET

What's life like for Kenneth Bae?

Anderson Cooper talks to Laura Ling, who was imprisoned in North Korea for five months, about the North Korean government sentencing American Kenneth Bae to 15 years in a labor camp. Bae was found guilty of unspecified "hostile acts," according to the state-run Korean Central News Agency. The tour operator had a proper visa to be in the country.

"It was the most terrifying time of my life," says Ling. She's concerned for Bae and his family, having experienced isolation in the most isolated country in the world. What little contact he's had with the Swedish ambassador was most likely extremely brief.

"I'm sure he feels extremely helpless," she says. Ling was violently beaten when she was first captured, but treated humanly while detained. A huge comfort was the written correspondence she was able to have with family. Ling describes the letters as "the only thing that kept me going during that time."

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