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Dennis Rodman defends friendship with Kim Jong Un after Otto Warmbier's death

Dennis Rodman defends friendship with Kim Jong Un after Otto Warmbier's death”

Mourners have paid their respects to an American college student who was detained in North Korea for over a year and died shortly after being returned home to OH in a coma.

The spokesman said North Korea could not understand why Mr. Warmbier died so suddenly after returning home because his health indicators were "normal" upon his release.

The U.S. diplomat who traveled to North Korea to secure Warmbier's release, Joseph Yun, was at the funeral and so was Ohio Senator Rob Portman who had harsh words for the country that detained him.

Former NBA star Dennis Rodman says he and his representatives begged North Korean leader Kim Jong Un three times to release American college student Otto Warmbier - who died just days after being released from captivity in the country - but is still friends with the controversial figure.

American doctors say he suffered brain damage and was in a state of "unresponsive wakefulness".

In the first official reaction to his death, a spokesman for the National Reconciliation Council earlier on Friday said that Warmbier was treated according to "international standards". He had been accused of stealing a propaganda poster and was serving a sentence of hard labour.

North Korea also further reemphasized their stance that Otto's sentence was deserving of his offense, which they maintain was an act of subversion against the government while also attempting to ward off "groundless" accusations that Otto was tortured or beaten.

North Korea has since denied any wrongdoing or mistreatment and claimed they were in fact "the biggest victim" in this situation.

Mr Portman told reporters that North Korea must be held accountable for what happened to the 22-year-old University of Virginia student, who died on Monday. It warned that such actions would force North Korea to become even stricter in its way of dealing with other United States nationals held in the country.

North Korea claims Warmbier had botulism then took a sleeping pill and never woke up, but said in the statement that their doctors brought him back to life after "his heart had almost stopped". The North previously released a short dispatch which said it released him on humanitarian grounds. "To make it clear, we are the biggest victim of this incident".

More than 2,500 family, friends and well-wishers gathered for his funeral in OH on Thursday.

"North Korea is a pariah regime".

The spokesman said it was a "mystery" as to why Warmbier died days after returning home, but compared his death to the case of another American detainee, Evan Hunziker.

The spokesman condemned the USA for advocating for sanctions and pressure against the North even as Pyongyang released him on humanitarian grounds.

President Donald Trump slammed Warmbier's detention and eventual death as "a total disgrace".



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