Otto Warmbier, jailed US student, freed by North Korea

Otto Warmbier was carrying out a 15-year prison sentence "for alleged anti-state acts", the site reports.

The college student's arrest was announced by North Korea in late January 2016, after he reportedly tried to steal a propaganda banner as a souvenir for a friend who wanted to hang it in her church.

Tillerson said the State Department had secured Warmbier's release per a decision from President Trump, and that the student was on his way home via a USA military base in Sapporo, Japan, to be reunited with his family in Cincinnati.

Former Chicago Bulls basketball star Dennis Rodman arrived in North Korea Tuesday and hopes to meet leader Kim Jong Un, at a time when President Donald Trump is said to be trying to set up a secret channel to North Korea.

North Korea is believed to still hold at least two US citizens ― Tony Kim, who had been in the country teaching at Pyongyang University of Science and Technology, and Kim Dong-chul, an American businessman imprisoned on charges of espionage.

Dennis Rodman has become an unlikely diplomat between the US and North Korea in recent years, thanks to his confusing bromance with supreme leader Kim Jong-Un.

Former NBA player Dennis Rodman is now in North Korea, returning to the isolated nation to try to "open a door" with leader Kim Jong Un, he told reporters before his flight departed from Beijing on Tuesday.

Since 2008, photographer Eric Lafforgue ventured to North Korea six times. State Department officials are accompanying Otto Warmbier from Sapporo to Cincinnati.

The U.S. government and other countries had been working for months to secure his release. The official spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because no formal statement had been released.

Previous detainees have been released after visits from high-profile Americans, including former presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton.

North Korea allowed a American student who fell into a coma while imprisoned in a labor camp to be flown home on Tuesday as Washington stepped up efforts to halt Pyongyang's nuclear program.

Tillerson's statement failed to mention Rodman's visit, with the secretary of state saying no further comments would be made out of respect for Warmbier's privacy.

The president of the University of Virginia said the school is "deeply concerned and saddened" to learn that their student is in a coma.

Former NBA star Dennis Rodman is back in North Korea, and once again, no one really knows why.

Rodman's trip has sparked speculation that he may be traveling to free American citizens being held by North Korea, perhaps as a first and important step toward lessening tensions between Washington and Pyongyang.

Mr Rodman developed a "bad boy" reputation in the 1990s, regularly clashing with players and officials during games.

It said the department "continues to have discussions with [North Korea] regarding the three other American citizens who are detained".

After arriving in Beijing before heading to Pyongyang, Rodman took to Twitter and thanked PotCoin, a marijuana currency company, for apparently sponsoring his mission to East Asia. On the same trip, he suggested that an American missionary was at fault for his own imprisonment in North Korea, remarks for which he later apologized. Reportedly, Warmbier is now in a coma.

Americans have been sentenced to years in North Korean prisons for seemingly minor offenses and likely could not expect leniency if the country's drug laws were violated.

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