Student released by North Korea arrives in Ohio

"Out of respect for the privacy of Mr. Warmbier and his family", said Tillerson, "we have no further comment".

Warmbier was sentenced to 15 years hard labor for allegedly stealing a propaganda poster from a hotel in North Korea in January 2016. He fell into a coma with sleeping pills. The North Koreans agreed and he was flown out on Tuesday. And how does the Trump administration respond? North Korea is not to be trusted, either in what it says or what it does.

The news came as flamboyant retired NBA basketball star Dennis Rodman - a former contestant on Trump's "Celebrity Apprentice" reality show - flew to Pyongyang to resume his quixotic quest to broker detente between his USA homeland and Kim Jong-Un's authoritarian regime. Rodman had told reporters before arriving in Pyongyang that the issue of Americans detained by North Korea is "not my objective right now".

Warmbier would have graduated from U.Va. last month had he not been detained. He said: "We are in a stage where we are moving into this next effort of, 'Are we going to have to, in effect, start taking secondary sanctions because countries we have provided information to have not, or are unwilling, or don't have the ability to do that?".

The North has occasionally jailed USA citizens on charges ranging from hostile acts to illegal entry, and released them only after visits by high-profile figures including former president Bill Clinton. He was sentenced to 15 years in jail after tearfully confessing to trying to steal a propaganda sign.

The US has in the past accused North Korea of detaining its citizens to use them as pawns in negotiations over its nuclear weapons programme.

"We strongly suggest that Americans do not go to North Korea", Nauert said. Yun met North Korea's ambassador to the United Nations on June 6 and was told about Warmbier's condition, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

But in Pyongyang, the Swedes were allowed to see only one detainee, and it wasn't Warmbier.

Before arriving this time, Rodman told reporters that Trump would be happy with the trip, since he was "trying to accomplish something that we both need", sparking speculation that he may be operating as an unofficial envoy.

Warmbier, 22, returned to the United States in a coma. The official referred to them as "hostages".

The North Koreans later urgently requested another meeting in NY.

State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert also said it was "just too soon to say" whether Warmbier's release could lead to more dialogue by Washington and Pyongyang.

The NBA Hall of Fame player arrived in Pyongyang for a four-day visit the same day Warmbier was released.

Health care professionals have also weighed in on Warmbier's case, though they decline to offer specific explanations for what he may be suffering from and why.

Yun was under orders, which the official said came directly from Trump, to demand to see Warmbier immediately and, "if he was in bad shape", to demand his immediate release. A plane carrying Warmbier arrived at a Cincinnati airport around 10:20 p.m. Tuesday. Officials said he was to stay until Saturday.

Warmbier's parents said in a statement that they were told their son has been in a coma since March 2016, and they had learned of this only one week ago.

A North Korean official told a US counterpart that Warmbier had contracted botulism and fell into the coma after taking a sleeping pill, CNN reports. The family of Otto Warmbier said he was in a coma and was on a Medivac flight home. His release brings the number of US citizens known to be in detention in the hermetic communist dictatorship down to three.

"It was very North Korean", noted one pundit on CNN.

Regardless of how Warmbier's coma began, his prognosis could be grim, given that he has been in a state of unconsciousness for approximately a year.

Warmbier was to have graduated last month had he not been detained. The State Department says this was the first time the United States was able to confirm the status of the student since he was sentenced to hard labor as a result of what North Korea deemed "anti-state acts".

University president Teresa Sullivan said in a statement that the school is relieved to hear Mr Warmbier was released, but is concerned about his condition.

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