McCain: North Korean government murdered Otto Warmbier

Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainMark Kelly's campaign raises over M in days after launching Senate bid The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Kidney Care Partners — Lawmakers wait for Trump's next move on border deal Mark Kelly launches Senate bid in Arizona MORE (R-Ariz.) said Monday that Otto Warmbier, the U.S. student who was held in North Korea, was murdered by the Kim Jung Un administration. 

Warmbier died Monday after being in a coma for over a year. The Senate Armed Services Committee chairman sent his condolences to Warmbier’s family and friends, adding that North Korea poses a serious threat to its neighbors and perpetrates human rights abuses at home.


“Now it has escalated to brutalizing Americans, including three other citizens currently imprisoned in North Korea,” McCain said in a statement. “The United States of America cannot and should not tolerate the murder of its citizens by hostile powers.”

Warmbier had been sentenced to 15 years in prison with hard labor.

“In the final year of his life, he lived the nightmare in which the North Korean people have been trapped for 70 years: forced labor, mass starvation, systematic cruelty, torture and murder,” McCain said. 

His parents said he was not responding to verbal commands nor was he able to see. Pyongyang blamed his coma on a case of botulism, a claim U.S. doctors doubted.