United States student Otto Warmbier freed by North Korea has 'severe brain injury'

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The news shed light on the Warmbier family's statement that their son suffered severe brain damage at some point in his 17 months of detention.

Tests did not turn up evidence of botulism, which the North Koreans had claimed Warmbier contracted before being given a sleeping pill and not waking up, doctor Brandon Foreman said. They said there is evidence Warmbier suffered a respiratory arrest, which led to a lack of oxygen to the brain. He had been on a tour of the reclusive country, his parents said.

According to the Post, the 22-year-old University of Virginia student has been in a coma since being convicted in a one-hour trial in Pyongyang in March 2016, accused of stealing a propaganda banner from a hotel. "That was it. That was the last physical time I saw Otto, ever", he added.

His father, Fred Warmbier, said Thursday he does not believe North Korea's explanation that the coma resulted from botulism and a sleeping pill.

"We're going to leave that to the doctors today", he said. "He has profound weakness of contraction in his arms and legs".

During a public news conference on Thursday, Dr. Daniel Kanter of University of Cincinnati Medical Center said, "His vital signs were stable upon arrival and have remained so".

The doctors refused to speculate on the cause of the comatose student's condition. Find us on Facebook too!

North Korea reportedly told a USA official that Otto contracted botulism while detained and slipped intothe coma after taking a sleeping pill.

They kept quiet "on the false premise that (North Korea) would treat Otto fairly and let him go", he said.

"Earlier this year, Cindy and I decided the time for strategic patience was over, and we made a few media appearances and traveled to Washington to meet with Ambassador Joe Yun at the State Department", he continued.

Warmbier was flown back to the United States, where a team of physicians undertook his medical care at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center in Ohio.

While thousands travel to North Korea each year and return safely, Warmbier's story shows there's a bad price to be paid for some. He was released six days later. He says the administration is heartened Warmbier has been reunited with his family.

"It's just something I think in the Western world we just can't understand, we just can't grasp, the evilness behind that dictatorship".

Though former President Barack Obama's administration tried, too, to secure Warmbier's release, it wasn't enough, Warmbier's father, Fred, said Thursday. He says efforts to get Warmbier home never ceased.

The U.S. Department of State "strongly warns" American travelers against visiting North Korea. "A really good trip", Rodman told reporters at Beijing's airport, Reuters reported.

But the young man who landed in Cincinnati and was immediately taken to a hospital isn't the same person who left a year and a half ago on a trip to explore the secretive country. He called on the country to release other Americans now held there.

Richardson, a Democrat who has made several trips to North Korea, said a forceful response from the United States government would be required "if it's determined that there was a cover-up and Otto's condition was not disclosed and he didn't get proper treatment". Former NBA basketball star Dennis Rodman visits the Korean Federation for the Protection of Disabled on Friday, June 16, 2017, in Pyongyang, North Korea.

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