Rodman begins sightseeing on NKorea trip he hopes opens door

The parents of the 22-year old American college student freed by North Korea say he is in a coma.

An airplane carrying OH native Otto Warmbier landed in Cincinnati late Tuesday night.

An American college student serving a 15-year prison term in North Korea who was released and medically evacuated from the country on Tuesday has been in a coma for months, his parents said.

At the president's direction, the Department of State has secured the release of Otto Warmbier from North Korea. He said Warmbier, 22, of Cincinnati, Ohio, was en route to the USA, where he will be reunited with his family. "We wish him well, but we have issued travel warnings to Americans and suggested they not travel to North Korea for their own safety".

The United States said yesterday North Korea has released an American student, hours after flamboyant former NBA star Dennis Rodman arrived in North Korea as part of a so-called "basketball diplomacy" trip.

Rodman's North Korea visits over the years have fueled speculation he could facilitate a diplomatic breakthrough between Pyongyang and Washington.

There is no way of knowing yet whether the North Korean version of events is true, but the Warmbiers have been told their son had been in a coma the whole time.

Warmbier's release came during a visit to North Korea by former National Basketball Association star Dennis Rodman, one of few people to have met both North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and President Donald Trump.

(ENGLISH) "We continue our discussions with the North Korean regime regarding the release of the other three American citizens that have been detained".

Reason for detention: The two American journalists were charged with entering North Korea illegally to conduct a smear campaign. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison with hard labor for subversion after he tearfully confessed that he had tried to steal a propaganda banner. North Korea's nuclear weapons program has now launched six missile tests.

Although details concerning the exact objective of Rodman's visit remain unknown, some analysts believe the retired basketball star is seeking to relay a message from President Donald Trump, who had previously lauded his attempts to engage North Korea following the country's repeated recent attempts to launch nuclear missile strikes.

The New York Times quoted a senior U.S. official as saying that Washington recently received intelligence reports that Warmbier had been repeatedly beaten in custody.

"I'm just trying to open the door", the eccentric ex-Chicago Bulls power forward told reporters at Beijing airport before boarding his Air Koryo flight. In April, an Egyptian court acquitted Aya Hijazi, an Egyptian-American charity worker held for almost three years, after Trump raised her case with the Egyptian president.

In previous cases, people who have been detained in North Korea and given a public confession often recant those admissions after their release.

Officials for PotCoin, which is likened to a smaller-scale Bitcoin for weed entrepreneurs and their customers, also did not explain why they've put up the money for Rodman's mission.

The U.S. government accuses North Korea of using such detainees as political pawns.

He taught at Pyongyang University of Science and Technology, a privately run school that has dozens of foreign faculty.

David Lee, who said he studied with Kim Hak-song in the United States, said Kim Hak-song would send food to North Korea. 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.

- Kim Sang Duk, also known as Tony Kim, was arrested on April 22 and later accused of trying to overthrow the North Korean regime.

A USA citizen who is being held in North Korea on charges of "hostile acts" against the Kim Jong Un regime may actually have faced different charges at the time of his arrest, according to an eyewitness.

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