Otto Warmbier Returns From North Korea With Extensive Brain Damage

Joseph Yun U.S. special envoy for North Korea policy

Warmbier is in stable a condition at the UC Medical Center, where he was taken after his arrival in OH on Wednesday, after more than 17 months in North Korean captivity.

The Warmbiers were told just a week ago that their son contracted botulism and fell into a coma shortly after being arrested and sentenced, in March past year.

North Korea claimed that Warmbier's brain damage is due to botulism, but Warmbier's doctors said Thursday they have found no evidence to support that claim.

US special envoy Joseph Yun was a household name to nearly no one before Warmbier's return to OH on Tuesday, yet he joins an exceedingly short list of USA officials to set foot in furtive North Korea in recent years. Fred Warmbier said at a news conference Thursday that Trump had said he was "sorry" and criticized his predecessor Barack Obama for his failure to obtain Otto Warmbier's release earlier. The North Koreans agreed to let Swedish diplomats visit the USA detainees, including Warmbier.

Fred Warmbier was visibly emotional during a news conference on Thursday, where he said his son Otto, fought to stay alive through the brutality and terror he endured in North Korea. "There is no excuse for any civilized nation to have kept his condition secret and denied him top-notch medical care for so long".

North Korea accuses Washington and South Korea of sending spies to overthrow its government. He was in Asia during a break from his studies at the University of Virginia.

Fred Warmbier echoed the message of United States officials, who have said Rodman played no role in the release.

Upon his arrival back into the states on June 13, he was immediately rushed to the University of Cincinnati Medical Center and diagnosed with severe neurological damage and loss of brain tissue.

"If there are humanitarian efforts that are being conducted, that's fine", he says. "We did so without result". "Beyond that we can not speculate on what might have occurred in the past".

"We have no certain info about what happened to Otto", Foreman said.

"He was very candid and it was a nice conversation", he said, adding that Trump expressed concern for the family's wellbeing. Otto Warmbier was sentenced the following month to 15 years in prison with hard labor. The doctor said this type of condition is what can lead to the destruction of brain tissue.

He is being treated at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center and is described by doctors as being "in a state of unresponsive wakefulness". He opens his eyes and blinks spontaneously but shows no signs of understanding language or responding to verbal commands, said Dr. Daniel Kanter, professor of neurology and director of the Neurocritical Care Program. Medics at the hospital believe his condition is the result of respiratory arrest, which is caused by a lack of oxygen and blood in the brain. In a young person, cardiopulmonary arrest can be caused by many things, including trauma or intoxication. "They did not, however, shed light on the circumstances of his injury or an exact cause". "But after a period, their natural progression of that state is to go into what used to be known as a persistent vegetative state", Pugar said.

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