Portman Statement on the Release of Otto Warmbier

June 13, 2017 | Press Releases

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) issued the following statement after Otto Warmbier was released by North Korea:

“The Secretary of State has confirmed to me that Otto has been released by North Korea, and is being returned to his family. Fred, Cindy, and the Warmbier family have been remarkably strong throughout this ordeal. Over the last 18 months, they have had to endure more than any family should have to bear. In the days and months ahead, I would urge everyone to continue to lift them up in prayer and to respect their privacy. 

“Otto’s detainment and sentence was unnecessary and appalling, and North Korea should be universally condemned for its abhorrent behavior. Otto should have been released from the start. For North Korea to imprison Otto with no notification or consular access for more than a year is the utmost example of its complete failure to recognize fundamental human rights and dignity.  

“We still have three Americans who are being held unjustly by North Korea. They should be released immediately.”