No conclusion yet on US student's cause of death

The death of American college student Otto Warmbier in Cincinnati this week, days after his release from 17 months of detention in North Korea, has injected new political complications into Trump's bid to persuade dictator Kim Jong Un to curb his regime's behavior.

His family did not give a cause of his death but said in a statement on Monday that the "awful torturous mistreatment" Warmbier endured while in custody meant "no other outcome was possible".

The coroner's office in Cincinnati, Ohio, said in a statement: "No conclusions about the cause and manner of Mr Warmbier's death have been drawn at this time as there are additional medical records and imaging to review and people to interview".

About 1,000 Americans a year visit North Korea despite State Department travel warnings.

The funeral will be held at 9 Wyoming High School, where Warmbier was an athlete and salutatorian of his 2013 class.

The coroner's office honored an objection to an autopsy from Warmbier's family and only performed an external examination, they announced.

Kim Jong-Un's regime claimed that Mr Warmbier contracted botulism and fell into a coma soon after being sentenced past year.

Warmbier passed away Monday after being released by the North Koreans.

Trump has held high hopes for greater cooperation from China to exert influence over North Korea, leaning heavily on Chinese President Xi Jinping for his assistance.

"I think the first objective has to be to get the three other Americans out, and get a full explanation of what happened to Otto Warmbier".

A bipartisan bill, spearheaded by California Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff and South Carolina Republican Rep. Joe Wilson, that would prevent American tourists from entering North Korea is gaining supporters.

Last month, California Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff and his Republican colleague Rep. Joe Wilson of SC introduced the North Korea Travel Control Act. Politicians renewed calls for the regime to release three USA citizens being held in the country.

He said he spoke with Warmbier's parents, adding it's "incredible what they've gone through" and that the student "should have been brought home a long time ago".

In the meantime, Nauert said the department "strongly warns" US citizens against travel to North Korea, and demanded that Pyongyang free three other Americans "unjustly detained" there "as soon as possible".

-North Korean tensions aggravated by dozens of North Korean missile launches and two nuclear bomb tests since previous year in defiance of U.N. Security Council resolutions.

North Korean officials claimed Warmbier fell into a coma in March past year due to botulism and a sleeping pill.

But some analysts believe negotiations could happen because of USA worries about the safety of the three other Americans still detained in North Korea.

Warmbier, 22, was convicted of stealing a propaganda poster while visiting North Korea and fell into a coma after he was sentenced in March 2016 to 15 years of hard labor.

Other well-known North Korea tour operators, including Koryo Tours, founded by British expatriates in Beijing, and Uri Tours, with offices in New Jersey and Shanghai, said this week that they were "reviewing" their policies for American citizens.

He also tweeted that "the USA once again condemns the brutality of the North Korean regime as we mourn its latest victim".

  • Zachary Reyes