Donald Trump has attacked the “brutality of the North Korean regime” following the death of American student Otto Warmbier – who had been imprisoned in the country for 17 months.
The US President has offered the family of Mr Warmbier his respects after news broke that the young man had died after being transported back to the United States from North Korea.
“Melania and I offer our deepest condolences to the family of Otto Warmbier on his untimely passing,” Mr Trump said in a statement. “There is nothing more tragic for a parent than to lose a child in the prime of life. Our thoughts and prayers are with Otto’s family and friends, and all who loved him.”
The President proceeded to say that Mr Warmbier’s untimely death recommitted his administration to make sure that another tragedy like the one that surrounded Mr Warmbier would not happen again.
“The United States once again condemns the brutality of the North Korean regime as we mourn its latest victim”, he said.
Mr Warmbier was imprisoned in a North Korean jail last year, eventually sentenced to 15 years of hard labour for allegedly attempting to steal a North Korean propaganda banner. He was handed over to US officials and flown back to America last week having been in a coma shortly after his March 2016 jailing.
The 22-year-old has been described as a bright, enthusiastic, and adventurous young man. The University of Virginia student was planning on spending his third year of college in China, which is how he found out about the Chinese tour companies that bring Americans on trips to see North Korea. His parents had thought the idea was okay at the time.
North Korean officials have indicated that he went into the coma after getting botulism, and taking a sleeping pill. The family has indicated that they doubt the veracity of that claim. Doctors who examined Mr Warmbier after his release said there was no sign of botulism in his system.
Physicians said last Thursday that…