Tony Kim earned a master's degree from UC Riverside in 1990 and has family in Riverside.
North Korean state media said they were arrested either for subversion or "hostile acts" against the government.
"We welcome the North Korea-U.S. summit to be held in Singapore on June 12".
"Frankly we didn't think it was going to happen and it did", Trump said after thanking Kim for releasing the men.
Bonnie Glaser, an Asia expert at Center for Strategic and International Studies, said that while the release was not an explicit precondition for the Trump-Kim meeting, the North Koreans understood that they had to do it for any progress to be made.
Trump plans to greet all three of the detainees and welcome them back on American soil. "So I think he has very smartly - and very masterfully. escalated and saber-rattled so that he could then switch and appear much more accommodating and present a more peaceful face". It is far from clear that is an outcome acceptable to the Pyongyang regime which has taken decades to develop nuclear warheads and the missiles to deliver them.
President Donald Trump is on board the military plane carrying three Americans released from North Korea during a middle-of-the-night welcome ceremony at a military base outside Washington. Before that he had shown an interest in the inter-Korean border zone, saying a "great celebration" could be had there if things worked out. Such a move might force the USA to halt the meeting, a presidential spokesman said yesterday.
Netanyahu to meet Putin amid new round of Syria strikes
Netanyahu made his statements as the two leaders discussed bilateral relations, as well as the situation in the Middle East. A barrage of 20 rockets was sacked Wednesday night from Syria towards Israeli military outposts in the Golan Heights.
He urged North Korea to release six South Korean nationals, including three pastors, who are still being held.
Trump had demurred on how likely their return was, telling reporters on Tuesday "we'll all soon be finding out".
"It's important for them, important for everybody", he added.
The three former detainees issued a joint statement on Wednesday thanking Trump for their release.
"We would like to express our deep appreciation to the United States government, President Trump, Secretary Pompeo, and the people of the United States for bringing us home", they said.
Before his sentencing, he spoke publicly and apologized for slandering North Korea's leadership, joining a smear campaign against the North's human rights situation and collecting and passing confidential information to South Korea. "We've picked a place for the meeting, or 'summit, ' as you like to call it", said Trump.
The city state is also very rich - with a GDP per capita of $ 53,000, just a little less than that of the U.S. - and authoritarian, and the USA would probably feel satisfied about the security it can provide to Trump, and for his Summit with the North Korean leader. He also met South Korean President Moon Jae-in at a historic summit in late April.
As the world waits to see what the Trump-Kim summit will bring, Singaporeans at home and overseas are watching it even closer, hoping that the tiny red dot on the world map they call home will prove itself to be a giant of diplomacy.