Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) knows exactly what happened to Otto Warmbier, the 22-year-old who was held captive in North Korea for over a year for stealing a propaganda poster in a hotel. The young man, who died Monday night just a few days after returning to the U.S., was "murdered," the Florida senator wrote on Twitter.
Otto Warmbier should never have been in jail for tearing down a stupid banner. And he most certainly should not have been murdered for it.— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) June 19, 2017
Warmbier had been in a coma for months - something the North Korean regime neglected to tell his parents until two weeks ago. The North Koreans claim he became unconscious after a severe food poisoning that then led to botulism. Warmbier's parents, as you can imagine, did not buy that story.
Three other American hostages are still being detained in North Korea. Rubio is joined by other lawmakers in condemning the regime's brutality.
“Heidi and I send our prayers and heartfelt condolences to the Warmbier family as they grieve the loss of their son, Otto," Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) said in a statement. "We share in their grief and anger over the torture he endured at the hands of his North Korean captors, but we thank God that Otto’s final days were spent with those who loved him most. The North Korean regime is mistaken if it believes that its barbaric mistreatment of an American citizen held in depraved captivity for over a year will pass quietly. My Senate colleagues and I will continue to work to hold Pyongyang accountable for its actions.”
President Trump, in his own statement, mourned with the Warmbiers, pledging to retaliate against the brutal regime and seek justice for its "latest victim."