Published: Tue, June 20, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

US coroner investigating death of student freed from N Korea


A senior North Korean official speaking after the death of a USA student held prisoner for 17 months by Pyongyang said on Tuesday his country followed national law and worldwide standards in its treatment of detainees.

US citizens Otto Warmbier.

"Now, the assessment of risk for Americans visiting North Korea has become too high", the agency wrote on Facebook, following "the devastating loss of Otto Warmbier's life".

He had planned to study in China in his third year of college and heard about Chinese travel companies offering trips to North Korea.

"The very bad torturous mistreatment our son received at the hands of the North Koreans ensured that no other outcome was possible beyond the sad one we experienced today", the family said in a statement announcing Warmbier's death at 7:20pm. A former University of Virginia student, he was serving a 15-year sentence in North Korea for allegedly attempting to steal a banner containing a political phrase that was hanging from a wall in his Pyongyang hotel.

"Unfortunately, the terrible torturous mistreatment our son received at the hands of the North Koreans ensured that no other outcome was possible beyond the sad one we experienced today", the Warmbiers said following Otto's death. He died six days later surrounded by relatives in his hometown of Cincinnati, Ohio. More than 15 months after he gave a staged confession in North Korea, he is with.

He said in an interview on "CBS This Morning" broadcast Tuesday that while it's not known for sure what happened, there can be speculation that North Korea made "unjust and cruel treatments" to Otto Warmbier.

He "has completed his journey home" to OH, the family said.

Recall that in North Korea were released, an American student of Otto Pombier, who was detained by the authorities of the country in 2016.

Warmbier's family said they learned last week that the 22-year-old had been in a coma since March 2016.

Doctors who examined Otto Warmbier after his release said there was no sign of botulism in his system.

But he firmly rejected two statements issued last week by Tomas Ojea-Quintana, the United Nations special rapporteur on human rights in North Korea, about detainees and stalled family reunions between Koreans on both sides of the divided peninsula.

His parents explained that when Warmbier returned to Cincinnati, he was "unable to "see", "speak" and "react to verbal commands".

In response to the news, U.S. President Donald Trump condemned North Korean "brutality" at the White House, after a series of meetings with the technology executives and academic leaders. But "within a day the countenance of his face changed, he was at peace".

"I believe we must now have the perception that North Korea is an irrational regime", Moon told the CBS television network.

Otto Warmbier's death brings home to American households the cruelty and capriciousness of North Korea in a way dozens of missile tests never could.

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