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A Canadian pastor has been released from a North Korean jail following concerns over his health.

Pyongyang said Hyeon Soo Lim, 62, was freed on “sick bail” following a “humanitarian” ruling by the state’s central court.

It comes two months after the death of US student Otto Warmbier, who was in a coma at the time of his release from a North Korean prison.

Over the weekend, a Canadian doctor and officials were dispatched to Pyongyang following reports that Lim had suffered “dramatic” weight loss.

Lim's congregation in Toronto pray for him after his 2015 arrest

Image: Lim’s congregation in Toronto pray for him after his 2015 arrest

In letters to his family, the South Korean-born pastor complained of stomach pains and high blood pressure.

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Family spokesperson Lisa Pak said there was “a long way to go in terms of Reverend Lim’s healing”.

She added: “We want to thank the global community for the continued prayers and support and we also ask that the world does not forget the people of North Korea.”

Lim was sentenced to hard labour for life in December 2015 for what North Korea says was an attempt to use “religious activities” to overthrow the regime.

Mr Warmbier broke down as he was jailed in March 2016

Image: Otto Warmbier died days after his release from a North Korean jail

He also allegedly confessed to helping people escape from the authoritarian country.

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The pastor was arrested earlier in the year while on a humanitarian mission to North Korea.

He had visited the country dozens of times and worked with orphanages and nursing homes as part of Christian missionaries.

Last year, the 62-year-old told CNN he was the sole prisoner in a labour camp, digging holes for eight hours a day, six days a week.

At least three Americans and six South Koreans remain in custody in the North.

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Hyeon Soo Lim: North Korea releases Canadian pastor