North Korea frees American citizen: US state secretary

Otto Warmbier is currently on his way back to the United States, Rex Tillerson says

North Korea frees American citizen: US state secretary

World Bulletin / News Desk

North Korea has freed an imprisoned U.S. citizen from its custody, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on Tuesday.

Otto Warmbier, 22, is currently on his way back to the United States where he will be reunited with his family, Tillerson said in a statement.

He said the U.S. continues to have talks with Pyongyang about three other American citizens who are reportedly detained in the North.

Warmbier was arrested by North Korean authorities 17 months ago for allegedly attempting to steal a state propaganda poster. He was sentenced to 15 years with hard labor after an hour-long trial.

The U.S. condemned the sentence at the time, accusing North Korea of attempting to use Warmbier as a political pawn amid heightened tensions between Washington and Pyongyang.

His parents told the Washington Post newspaper their son is in a coma and has been for over a year.

Tillerson did not elaborate on Warmbier's current health condition, and said he would not be offering additional comment out of respect for the family's privacy.

The announcement comes as former NBA superstar Dennis Rodman makes a return visit to the hermit kingdom where he has regularly enjoyed access to the country's top leadership, including Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un.

Details of what Rodman plans to do there on his current visit remain elusive.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 13 Haziran 2017, 18:14
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