The office of Bill Richardson confirmed the former New Mexico governor's planned trip to North Korea with Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt today via press release. The trip, planned for next week, is being billed as a humanitarian initiative. The duo's team also includes Google employee Jared Cohen, the director of the software giant's Google Ideas initiative, a think tank tasked with "tackling some of the toughest human challenges." Ideas' mission statement also highlights the program's search for "challenges that affect multiple regions and demographics, so that the technological developments our insights fuel will scale to help as many people as possible."

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Governor Bill Richardson's Statement on Upcoming Mission to North Korea

Governor Bill Richardson will travel to North Korea next week on a private humanitarian mission. The delegation will consist of former New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt, Dr. KA Namkung; Jared Cohen, Director of Google Ideas; as well as some staff members.

Since no media is accompanying the delegation, Gov. Richardson will have a press availability at the Beijing Airport on Thursday, January 10th, details will follow.

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