The parents of American student Otto Warmbier who died after being held captive in North Korea have broken their silence to strongly condemned Kim Jong-un’s regime as “terrorists.”
In a media interview with Fox and Friends, Fred and Cindy Warmbier recalled their pain and grief in seeing their son again after his a year and a half’s exile in North Korea. The reunion was not at all a happy occasion as they have been informed that their son was suffering from “severe brain damage.”
Cindy Warmbier said: “We thought he was in a coma, but you couldn’t call it a coma. What we pictured, because we’re optimists, was that Otto would be asleep and maybe in a medically-induced coma. And then when our doctors here would work with him and he’d get the best care and love, that he would come out of it.”
Fred also recalled the devastating moment they first saw their son on the plane when he arrived, and Otto was lying on a stretcher. Mr. Warmbier said: “He was jerking violently, making these inhuman sounds.”
The father added: “Otto had a shaved head, he had a feeding tube coming out of his nose, he was staring blankly into space. He was blind, he was deaf. As we looked at him and tried to comfort him it looked like someone had taken a pair of pliers and rearranged his bottom teeth.”
Otto Warmbier was a University of Virginia student who was detained by Kim Jong-un’s regime after allegedly stealing a propaganda poster. He later died a few months ago in a U.S. hospital after suffering from a serious neurological injury.
North Korea, however, is insisting that it was the “biggest victim” with its foreign ministry even saying in a statement after Warmbier’s death that while they have no reason at all to show mercy to “such a criminal” and an enemy of the state, they have provided him with medical treatments and care “with all sincerity on a humanitarian basis” until his return to the U.S.
It is something that Fred Warmbier was finally able to refute as he said North Korea could anything but a victim in all these conflicts. He said: “Now we see North Korea claiming to be a victim and the world is picking on them, and we’re here to tell you North Korea’s not a victim, they’re terrorists.”
The father added: “They kidnapped Otto, they tortured him, they intentionally injured him.” He emphasized with conviction: “They are not victims, they’re terrorists.”