Published: Thu, June 15, 2017
World News | By Carolyn Briggs

Trump worked 'very hard' to get student released


American student Otto Warmbier, center, is escorted at the Supreme Court in Pyongyang, North Korea, for his trial on March 16, 2016. The two bonded over their OH roots, and later lived together their junior year, when Warmbier was detained, Saulnier said. At the meeting, North Korea agreed that Swedish diplomats could visit all four American detainees, who at that time included Warmbier.

An airplane carrying Otto Warmbier, who is from OH, landed in Cincinnati late Tuesday night.

Warmbier was serving a 15-year prison term with hard labor in North Korea for alleged anti-state acts.

A second person who was involved in early discussions with North Koreans about U.S. prisoners said Warmbier's family at one point told friends they believed the North had killed their son.

At least 16 USA citizens have been detained in North Korea in the past 10 years, according to the State Department's travel advisory.

Fred and Cindy Warmbier said in a statement to The Associated Press that their son is in a coma and flying home.

American college student Otto Warmbier has landed back in the United States after more than 17 months in detention in North Korea. "I think we're very excited yet very prayerful about what is happening because we've heard he is in a coma".

A hospital spokeswoman did not provide an update on his condition, but she said his parents plan to hold a news conference on Thursday morning. North Korea gave him a sleeping pill, and he never woke up. North Korea accuses Washington and South Korea of sending spies to overthrow its government.

When asked if he would bring up the cases of Warmbier and three other Americans detained in North Korea, Rodman told reporters, "that's not my objective right now". Sadly, he is in a coma and we have been told he has been in that condition since March of 2016.

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Warmbier had not been seen in public since he was sentenced to 15 years of hard labor in March 2016. His parents told The Post that North Korean representatives suddenly informed US officials last week that the student was in a coma.

The comatose American college student released from North Korea must have gone through "horrendous mistreatment" in the communist nation, the Washington Post said Wednesday, calling for stronger sanctions on Pyongyang.

They're "so grateful that he will finally be with people who love him".

Two Ohio senators are denouncing North Korea after a resident of their state was said to be in a coma after being released from a prison in that country. The official referred to them as "hostages". Fowle left a Bible in a local club hoping a North Korean would find it, which is considered a criminal offense in North Korea.

North Korea sent high-level Foreign Ministry officials to Oslo specifically to meet with Yun.

The news surfaced after the flamboyant retired NBA basketball star Dennis Rodman - a former contestant on Trump's "Celebrity Apprentice" reality show - flew to Pyongyang to resume his quixotic quest to broker detente between his U.S. homeland and Kim Jong-Un's authoritarian regime.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that the State Department secured Warmbier's release at the direction of President Donald Trump.

Before arriving this time, Rodman told reporters that Trump would be happy with the trip because he was "trying to accomplish something that we both need", prompting speculation that he may be operating as an unofficial envoy.

Kim's government frequently threatens attacks on the US, is known to possess nuclear weapons and is working to develop a delivery mechanism with a range great enough to strike the United States mainland. Trump has lobbied China to exert more economic and political pressure on Pyongyang and has called on leaders of other Asian nations to cut their diplomatic ties with Pyongyang.

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