05:37 GMT23 October 2020
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    US considering a total ban of Americans travel to North Korea following the death of 22-year-old Otto Warmbier.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) Chairman of the US House Foreign Affairs Committee Ed Royce has promised to move swiftly to advance a bill to limit travel by American citizens to North Korea, Congressman Joe Wilson said in a statement on Tuesday.

    "I am grateful that Chairman Ed Royce has committed to marking up this important legislation soon, and look forward to having it debated in the House Foreign Affairs Committee," Wilson said.

    Wilson co-authored the bill, dubbed the North Korea Travel Control Act, along with Congressman Adam Schiff.

    The legislation would task the Treasury Department with issuing regulations requiring a license for travel to, from and within North Korea by American citizens. It would also ban any form of tourist travel by Americans.

    "I’m pleased that the Foreign Affairs Committee is moving expeditiously to take up our bill, which would place meaningful and effective limits on the travel of Americans to this pariah state, and ban tourist travel entirely," Schiff said in the statement.

    The Congressmen proposed the bipartisan legislation late last month, but the bill has gained traction since the death of Otto Warmbier, a college student who was imprisoned by North Korea for over a year. Warmbier died on Monday after being returned to the United States in a coma.

    At least 17 Americans have been detained in North Korea over the past 10 years, despite a State Department warning against travel to the country. Three Americans currently remain imprisoned.


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