More arrests over death of Kim Jong-nam

Feb 17, 2017, 00:30
More arrests over death of Kim Jong-nam

The apparent assassination in Malaysia of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's half-brother has intelligence agents, North Korea watchers and the media scurrying to find the motives behind the high-profile incident.

According to two senior Malaysian government officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the case involves sensitive diplomacy, Kim Jong Nam told medical workers before he died that he had been attacked with a chemical spray.

The pair were being questioned along with a 28-year-old woman with a Vietnamese travel document detained on Wednesday by detectives trying to get to the bottom of the murder of the estranged playboy brother of Kim Jong-Un.

One of the female suspects had Vietnamese travel documents and was picked up Wednesday at the budget terminal of the airport, the same place where the attack took place.

Zahid said police acted swiftly and efficiently. Both women are now in custody.

Kumparan, an Indonesian news portal, said Aisyah lived in the Tambora neighborhood in western Jakarta for about 10 years before moving to Malaysia in 2013 along with her husband and children.

Malaysia will return the body of the half-brother of North Korea's leader at Pyongyang's request, although there are "procedures to be followed", the deputy prime minister told reporters on Thursday.

Investigators were still piecing together details of the case, including the widespread assumption that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un dispatched a hit squad to kill his estranged half brother, Kim Jong Nam. Kim Jong-un is the third son. She was arrested by Malaysian police early Thursday.

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The two women arrested were identified using surveillance videos from the airport, but it was not immediately clear if they are believed to be the actual assassins.

CCTV images that emerged in Malaysian media, purportedly of one of the suspects, showed an Asian woman wearing a white top with the letters "LOL" emblazoned on the front.

Dr Zahid said he believed relations between North Korea and Malaysia would not be soured by the killing.

Indonesian Immigration Office spokesman Agung Sampurno said officials from the Indonesian Embassy in Kuala Lumpur met with the woman in Selangor state, where she is being held, and ensured she is in safe condition.

One group points to the possibility that the North Korean leader ordered the killing of Kim Jong-nam in order to remove any potential threat to his power.

In October 2012, South Korean prosecutors said a North Korean man detained as a spy had admitted involvement in a plot to stage a hit-run accident targeting Kim Jong-nam in China in 2010.

To help North Koreans realize the regime's brutality, South Korea's military said Wednesday it will broadcast news of the murder through loudspeakers installed around the border regions. Lee of the NIS said that the latest assassination shows that Kim is captivated by a sense of paranoia.