President Trump paid tribute to Otto Warmbier Tuesday after his summit with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, telling reporters that the historic meeting “wouldn't have happened” if not for the 22-year-old’s death.
Warmbier, a student at the University of Virginia, was arrested and sentenced to 15 years in prison in North Korea for allegedly stealing a propaganda poster. After falling into a coma, Warmbier was brought back to the U.S. but died shortly afterwards.
“Something happened from that day, it was a terrible thing. It was brutal. But a lot of people started to focus on what was going on including North Korea. I really think that Otto is someone who did not die in vain,” Trump said.
Trump: "I think without Otto [Warmbier] this would not have happened. Something happened from that day -- it was a terrible thing. It was brutal ... I really think that Otto is someone who did not die in vain." pic.twitter.com/cBnGWD7PHj— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) June 12, 2018
Warmbier, Trump added, was a “special young man” with “special parents” who “had a lot to do with us being here today.”
The meeting took place on the one-year anniversary of Warmbier’s release.
Chairman Kim agreed to “complete denuclearization” of the Korean Peninsula in exchange for “security guarantees” from the U.S.
"President Trump and Chairman Kim Jong Un conducted a comprehensive, in-depth, and sincere exchange of opinions on the issues related to the establishment of new U.S.–DPRK relations and the building of a lasting and robust peace regime on the Korean Peninsula. President Trump committed to provide security guarantees to the DPRK, and Chairman Kim Jong Un reaffirmed his firm and unwavering commitment to complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula," the leaders said in a joint statement.