N.Korea frees student in coma after high-level USA visit

They say he's been in a coma since after his trial a year ago.

Emmett Saulnier, Warmbier's former college roommate, said he got a brief phone call from Warmbier's father early Tuesday to let him know the younger Warmbier was coming home, and he had been in a coma since last March.

Warmbier was flown first to an American military medical facility in Japan, then flown on to Cincinnati, near his family's home. During this meeting, Yun learned about Mr. Warmbier's condition.

Fred and Cindy Warmbier, the parents of Otto Warmbier, stand in their home in Wyoming, Ohio, April 26, 2017.June 12, 2017 North Korean officials met the American delegation in Pyongyang, the State Department said.

They added they were grateful their son "will finally be with people who love him".

This file photo taken on February 29, 2016 and released by North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency on March 1, 2016 shows Otto Warmbier at a press conference in Pyongyang.

But Fifield says another motivation may have driven the North Koreans.

Kim Jong-un returned United States prisoner Otto Warmbier in a coma and intelligence chiefs believe he could have experienced the harsh regime's brutality.

Dennis Rodman, the former National Basketball Association bad boy who has palled around with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, flew to Pyongyang on Tuesday on a trip he says he hopes will "open a door" for his former "Celebrity Apprentice" boss — U.S. President Donald Trump. Three other Americans remain in custody in North Korea. North Korea accuses Washington and South Korea of sending spies to overthrow its government.

Tillerson responded: "Ah, no comment on that right now".

The NBA hall of famer, who is 56, discussed his trips to North Korea with Trump before the businessman was elected president, according to associates of Rodman.

Since taking office in January, Trump has faced a growing national security challenge from North Korea, which has conducted a series of ballistic missile tests in defiance of U.S. and global sanctions.

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

"We are aware of his visit". When the Swedes finally got the okay to visit, the North Koreans immediately asked for a meeting with Joe Yun, the U.S. envoy in NY, when he was told about Otto Warmbier's condition.

The statement by Tillerson, which he later read Tuesday morning at a congressional hearing, offered no other details and made no mention of Rodman's visit. It was a trip sponsored by PotCoin, a digital currency for legally purchasing marijuana, and was meant to "keep bringing sports to North Korea", the former N.B.A. player told reporters in the Beijing airport Tuesday. President Donald Trump ordered Warmbier's medical evacuation, and the North Koreans agreed. The official spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because no formal statement had been released.

Rodman has now been to North Korea five times, but he has come under heavy criticism for appearing to appease a man who leads a regime that is vowing a nuclear strike on the United States. Thousands of USA troops are based in South Korea, and the Demilitarized Zone between the North and South is one of the most heavily fortified borders in the world. "Dennis Rodman has nothing to do with the release of Mr. Warmbier", said State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert.

Rodman was a two-time cast member on the Celebrity Apprentice in 2008 and 2013, which Trump hosted.

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