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U.S. student released from N. Korea dies: report

All News 05:46 June 20, 2017

WASHINGTON, June 19 (Yonhap) -- A U.S. college student recently released from North Korea in a coma has died, his family was quoted as saying Monday.

Reuters and AP cited a family statement saying that Otto Warmbier, a 22-year-old University of Virginia student, has died. Further details were not immediately available.

Warmbier returned to his Ohio home in a coma after spending 17 months in the North on charges of stealing a political propaganda poster. North Korean officials claimed Warmbier fell into a coma in March last year due to botulism and a sleeping pill.

Doctors said Warmbier had severe brain damage and was in a state of "unresponsive wakefulness."

U.S. President Donald Trump said what happened to Warmbier is a "truly terrible thing."

His death is expected to further exacerbate the already tense relations between the U.S. and the North.

jschang@yna.co.kr
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