North Korea should be listed as a state sponsor of terrorism, and it intentionally tortured and injured the late Otto Warmbier, his parents told Fox & Friends Tuesday morning, during their first interview since his death.
The Warmbiers explained that they'd hoped to stay out of the spotlight and heal, "but now we see North Korea claiming to be a victim, and that the world is picking on them", Fred explained.
Warmbier was detained in Pyongyang in January 2016 while on a tourist trip to North Korea.
"It's been three months since Otto has died and we buried him", Otto's father Fred Warmbier said on Fox News. "Otto was tortured beyond belief by North Korea".
The family thanked the University of Cincinnati Medical Center for treating him, but said: 'Unfortunately, the bad torturous mistreatment our son received at the hands of the North Koreans ensured that no other outcome was possible beyond the sad one we experienced today'.
Fred Warmbier described a "howling, involuntary, inhuman sound" as he and his family walked up the steps of the plane that transported their son back to the USA from North Korea.
Image President Trump said the student was 'tortured beyond belief'
"They destroyed him", his mother Cindy Warmbier said. He had - he was staring blankly into space jerking violently.
Fred said his son was blind and deaf. "They're terrorists. They kidnapped Otto".
Trump responded to the interview following its airing, saying that Warmbier "was tortured beyond belief by North Korea". In June, the 22-year-old was medically evacuated to the USA and died six days later in Cincinnati.
He says North Korea "is not a victim".
In December 2015, while on a study overseas program in China, Otto Warmbier joined 10 other Americans as part of a North Korea tour. Trump has blasted the country's leader, Kim Jong Un, and called him names such as "Rocket Man". He was convicted of subversion and sentenced to 15 years in prison with hard labor.
United States officials have said Trump was personally taken aback by Warmbier's death and his comment Tuesday ratchets up the pressure on Kim Jong-Un's regime. She said it was "inexcusable" that her son had been alone in captivity for so long with no one to comfort him. North Korean officials claim Warmbier wasn't tortured, but USA intelligence reports say he was badly beaten in custody.
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