North Korea releases South Korean student
Joo Won-moon (C), a South Korean citizen who has permanent residency in the United States, speaks to media under portraits of North Korea's former leaders Kim Jong Il (top R) and Kim Il Sung, in Pyongyang Kyodo via Reuters

North Korea is set to release a 21-year-old South Korean student, a resident of the United States. Joo Won-moon has been held by Pyongyang since April 2015.

Joo was apprehended by the North Korea personnel when he attempted to enter the reclusive nation from China. The New York University student will be repatriated at about 05:30 pm local time on Monday, 5 October, Seoul announced.

"It's a relief that North Korea has decided to repatriate our national, Joo," said a Seoul unification ministry official, urging the release of three other South Koreans who have been held up, reported Yonhap news agency. Joo will be received by the South Korean authorities at the truce village of Panmunjom.

Joo was recently paraded by the Pyongyang regime in front of media. Reading from a statement, he said: "I thought that by my entrance to the DPRK [the Democratic People's Republic of Korea], illegally I acknowledge, I thought that some great event could happen and hopefully that event could have a good effect on the relations between the North and [South Korea]."