United States student freed by North Korea suffered 'severe neurological injury'

US student freed from North Korea suffered ‘severe neurological injury

Yesterday we learned that University of Virginia student Otto Warmbier, who was arrested and put on trial in North Korea previous year, has been in a coma ever since then.

In recent months, Warmbier said, he and his wife, Cindy, had made a decision to take a more public stance in calling for their son's release, after months of following advice that they should try not to antagonize or offend leaders in North Korea.

"I don't know what being in shock is, but I'm pretty sure I was", he said, referring to when he was informed Otto Warmbier was in a coma.

He said he and his wife Cindy had not left their son's side since his return to the United States and he had spoken with President Donald Trump on Wednesday.

In an interview slated to air on Thursday evening, Warmbier's father Fred told anchor Tucker Carlson that his son is "not in great shape."

Upon learning about Warmbier's condition, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told Yun to take a delegation to North Korea. They said there is evidence Warmbier suffered a respiratory arrest, which led to a lack of oxygen to the brain.

"We're proud of him, too", some in the crowd shouted back.

Tensions between the United States and North Korea have been heightened by dozens of North Korean missile launches and two nuclear bomb tests since the beginning of previous year.

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Fred Warmbier said he was stunned when told of his son's condition one week ago.

North Korea said the 22-year-old's medical condition was caused by botulism and a sleeping pill he was given after his trial in 2016. "I think the results speak for themselves", Warmbier said.

"For the last 18 months I've been brutalized with misinformation and no information", Warmbier said.

Warmbier also expressed disbelief at North Korea's explanation for his son's condition.

He said he felt "anger that [Otto] was so brutally treated for so long" but was relieved his son was "now home in the arms of those who love him".

The elder Warmbier denied the current visit to North Korea by former basketball star Dennis Rodman had anything to do with his son's release, calling it a "diversion".

He noted that doctors said a lack of blood flow to Warmbier's brain occurred some time before April 2016, according to scans, which would be right after Warmbier was sentenced to hard labor in March 2016.

The other Americans held by Pyongyang are Kim Sang Duk and Kim Hak-song, academics who worked at the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology, and businessman named Kim Dong Chul.

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