Donald Trump decries 'brutal' North Korea regime after student's death

US President Donald Trump reacts to news that student Otto Warmbier died only days after being released in a coma from 17 months of detention in North Korea.

WASHINGTON (AFP) - President Donald Trump on Monday (June 19) denounced North Korea as "a brutal regime" after the death of a 22-year-old US student released by the reclusive country in a coma last week.

Speaking moments after news of Otto Warmbier's death was announced publicly, Trump hit out at Pyongyang.

"It's a brutal regime," the president said during a White House event. "Bad things happened but at least we got him home to his parents."

In a separate written statement, Trump offered his "deepest condolences" to Warmbier's family "on his untimely passing."

"There is nothing more tragic for a parent than to lose a child in the prime of life. Our thoughts and prayers are with Otto's family and friends, and all who loved him," he said.

"Otto's fate deepens my Administration's determination to prevent such tragedies from befalling innocent people at the hands of regimes that do not respect the rule of law or basic human decency. The United States once again condemns the brutality of the North Korean regime as we mourn its latest victim."