Congress to take up North Korea travel ban legislation as soon as next month: report

Congress to take up North Korea travel ban legislation as soon as next month: report
© Getty Images

Congress is readying legislation that would ban most U.S. travel to North Korea after 22-year-old Otto Warmbier was imprisoned in the country and then released to his parents in a coma, according to CNN.

Warmbier died in the United States days after his return, raising tensions between the United States and North Korea and leading lawmakers to look for ways to punish Pyongyang while protecting U.S. citizens.

Travel prohibitions have received the most attention, and the House Foreign Affairs Committee plans to draft a bill that would prohibit the majority of travel to the authoritarian country for five years, CNN reports.


The bipartisan legislation, which is sponsored by Reps. Joe WilsonAddison (Joe) Graves WilsonTrump calls North Carolina redistricting ruling ‘unfair’ Sacha Baron Cohen mulls arming toddlers with guns in inaugural episode Why civility in politics won't be getting any better MORE (R-S.C.) and Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffKey House Dem's objections stall intel bill as deadline looms The Hill's Morning Report — Sponsored by United Against Nuclear Iran — Kavanaugh and his accuser will testify publicly Russia probe accelerates political prospects for House Intel Dems MORE (R-Calif.), would prohibit travel for tourism purposes and demand that any U.S. citizen going to the country for any purpose obtain a license from the Treasury Department.

Warmbier, who was sentenced to 15 years in prison with hard labor for allegedly stealing a propaganda banner, died after suffering from a “severe neurological injury.”

While U.S. doctors have not determined the cause of Warmbier’s death, North Korea has been blamed.