Hometown pleased that Ohio student has returned from North Korea

"We thank you for the opportunity and blessing you've given us to serve your agenda and the American people", said chief of staff Reince Priebus, who reports suggest may be at risk of losing his job amid internal palace squabbles.

USA student Otto Warmbier is hospitalized in Cincinnati after he was returned from North Korea.

But amid the relief, there were also new questions about what happened to him: How did a healthy young man fall into such a deep coma? The North Koreans agreed and he was flown out on Tuesday. And how does the Trump administration respond?

In rare high-level contacts, Yun met senior North Korean officials in Oslo in May, where it was agreed Swedish officials in Pyongyang, who handle USA consular affairs there, would be allowed to see all four American detainees, a State Department official said.

The 22-year-old University of Virginia student was taken by ambulance to a hospital.

He was charged with "hostile acts against the state".

Bush pointed out Warmbier had "been in a coma for a very long time", and that North Korean authorities "probably didn't want him to die", Radio Free Asia reported. Moon - a liberal who has historically worked for rapprochement, rather than confrontation, with the North - was critical of some aspects of USA policy in the region ahead of his election.

Portman praised the State Department's top official on North Korea, Joseph Yun, for his role in securing Warmbier's release.

Warmbier was detained in January 2016 at the airport in Pyongyang while on his way home. Swedish diplomats, who represent USA interests in North Korea because the United States has no diplomatic relations with the country, had been denied access to him until late last month, following Yun's Oslo meeting. "His arrest was also for "acts of hostility" that aimed to "overturn" the state," North Korean officials said.

Tillerson announced that the Department of State had secured Warmbier's release at the direction of the Republican president. As the administration continued to push, Pyongyang urgently requested to see Yun at the United Nations in NY.

Earlier this week, Defence Secretary James Mattis testified to Congress that North Korea was the "most urgent" threat against the safety and security of the United States. The official referred to them as "hostages".

Americans are regarded as enemies in North Korea because the two countries never signed a peace treaty at the end of the 1950-53 Korean War. But State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert told reporters Rodman had nothing to do with Warmbier's release. Yun and two physicians flew to Pyongyang and visited Warmbier on Monday. They were immediately taken to Warmbier. The news of Warmbier's release raced across Grounds along with news of his coma.

Friends and well-wishers gathered outside Cincinnati's Lunken Airport Terminal ahead of the plane's arrival at 10:20 p.m. local time, and they cheered when the plane landed. He was said to have lost consciousness after contracting botulism and taking a sleeping pill - an account that strains credulity. He was taken off the plane by medical staff and has reportedly been in a coma for up to a year. US officials in touch with Yun and medical personnel declined to say whether Warmbier remains in a coma or to make any comment on his current medical condition.

Trump's floating of a potential meeting is radical: No U.S. president has met with a North Korean leader since that nation's founding in 1948.

The news surfaced after the 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.

The US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that Warmbier is now on his way back to the United States to be reunited with his family.

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