Inside North Korea
Rupert Wingfield-Hayes accused of ‘distorting’ facts and ‘speaking’ ill of the North Korean leadership Damir Sagolj/Reuters

BBC correspondent Rupert Wingfield-Hayes and his crew who were detained in North Korea are being expelled from the country. China's Xinhua News Agency quoted the North's National Peace Committee as saying that the reporter was being expelled for "attacking the DPRK system and non-objective reporting".

O Ryong-il, secretary general of the committee, alleged the journalist had distorted facts and "spoke ill of the system and the leadership of the country", the Guardian reported.

Hayes was in North Korea with producer Maria Byrne and camera person Matthew Goddard to cover a delegation of Nobel laureates conducting a research trip. The three were detained on Friday (6 May) as they were about to leave the country. The correspondent was questioned for eight hours after which he was made to sign a statement.

The BBC said the three-member team has been taken to the airport.

Another BBC Correspondent, John Sudworth, who was in Pyongyang, said in a broadcast report: "When he reached the airport on Friday, he was separated from the rest of his team, prevented from boarding that flight, taken to a hotel and interrogated by the security bureau here in Pyongyang before being made to sign a statement and then released, eventually allowed to rejoin us here in this hotel," Reuters reported.