**North Korea Details Charges Against American Prisoner **
North Korea's supreme court has detailed some of the charges against a Korean-American tour operator who was sentenced to 15 years of hard labor last month for plotting to overthrow the government.
A court spokesman told the North's official Korean Central News Agency on Thursday that Kenneth Bae was arrested in the city of Rason in November while in the possession of anti-Pyongyang literature.
The spokesman said Bae was working through churches in the U.S. and South Korea to bring down the North Korean government. He was also accused of bringing more than 1,500 people from North Korea, China and other countries to what were called "plot-breeding" bases around China, and giving lectures opposing Pyongyang.
The spokesman said that Bae had confessed to all the charges. He was convicted and sentenced in a closed-door trial that his attorney was not allowed to attend.
**Merkel Visits Afghanistan**
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has made a previously unannounced trip to Afghanistan to visit with German troops serving on the NATO peacekeeping force there.
Ms. Merkel arrived Friday in northern Afghanistan, according to German officials. Her visit comes less than a week after a German soldier was killed in an insurgent attack in northern Afghanistan.
Germany has the third-largest international troop deployment in Afghanistan, after the United States and Britain. It currently has about 4,200 troops in the NATO International Security Assistance Force.