Published: Thu, March 16, 2017
World | By Carl Welch

Kim Jong-nam death: Malaysia 'to deport 50 North Koreans'

Kim Jong-nam death: Malaysia 'to deport 50 North Koreans'

Malaysian authorities say Kim was killed February 13 when two women smeared his face with the banned nerve agent VX in a crowded airport terminal.

The decision, said Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi will be determined by the governement today.

Malaysia has announced that the identity of the man who was murdered in Kuala Lumpur's airport last month has been officially confirmed as Kim Jong-nam.

Two women smeared what Malaysian authorities say was VX nerve agent on his face.

Malaysian authorities subsequently announced that the victim had died as a result of exposure to VX, a powerful toxin classified by the United Nations as a weapon of mass destruction.

In a tit-for-tat move, Malaysia decided not to allow North Korean diplomats to leave the Southeast Asian country.

Two-thirds of the 39 countries that North Koreans can travel to without a visa are in Asia and Africa, including Cambodia, Mongolia, Mozambique, Tanzania and Uganda. He said anyone including North Korea could ask for such inquiry.

North Korea's ambassador to the UN Kim In-ryong denounced [press conference] the claims as falsehoods, denying the accusations, accusing its enemies of spreading disinformation. The Malaysian authorities say there are about 1,000 North Koreans now in Malaysia.

Kuala Lumpur and Pyongyang had a warm relationship before Kim Jong-nam's murder. Three Malaysian embassy staff and six family members are stranded in North Korea as a result.

Malaysia retaliated by banning some 1,000 North Korean, mostly illegal workers earning hard currency for their regime, from leaving until the safety of the Malaysians in the North is assured.

The workers were employed in mines and construction sites in the state.

"We used as many identification markers as possible to confirm the identity of Kim Jong-Nam", Deputy Home Minister Nur Jazlan Mohamed told AFP.

To a certain extent the Kim Jong-nam case has been tied to the destiny of the nine Malaysians still in Pyongyang.

Tomas Ojea Quintana told the council that tensions caused by North Korea's ballistic missile and nuclear tests are jeopardizing efforts to improve human rights in the secretive country.

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