Lisa Ling, the sister of one of the two US reporters jailed in North Korea, received a phone call on Tueday that allowed her the smallest bit of relief in this tragic circumstance.
"It was a tremendous relief to hear Laura's voice last night," said the journalist regarding a call from her sister Laura. "It was only the first time I have heard her voice in weeks. That silence has been just so terrifying and deafening."
Laura Ling and Euna Lee were sentenced by North Korean courts to 12 years of "reform through labor" for illegal border crossing.
Lisa said that Laura "was very specific about the message she was communicating and she said, 'look, we violated North Korean law and we need our government to help us. We're sorry about everything that happened but now we need diplomacy."
Since no one has physically seen Laura or Euna, it is difficult to tell how they are holding up in prison.
US officials - led by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton - have appealed for clemency on humanitarian grounds and asked that the case not be linked to the ongoing nuclear standoff.
Our thoughts are with them!
[Image via AP Images.]