Hospital workers move a body cart through the gate of the forensics wing at Hospital Kuala Lumpur, where the body of Kim Jong-nam lies, in Kuala Lumpur on March 11, 2017. (Photo by AFP)
says it will give the relatives of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s half-brother two to three weeks to claim his body before deciding what to do with it.
Malaysian authorities say Kim Jong-nam died after two women smeared his face with the banned VX nerve agent at Kuala Lumpur’s airport on February 13, but North Korea
rejects the findings.
Pyongyang has demanded the body back from day one and objected to Malaysia’s autopsy. It also has refused to acknowledge that Kim Jong-nam was the victim and has referred to him as Kim Chol, the name on the passport Kim was carrying when he was attacked in a crowded airport terminal.
On Friday, Malaysian police confirmed that Kim Chol and Kim Jong-nam was the same person, but refused to say how they identified Kim. The body is being kept at a morgue at a Kuala Lumpur hospital.
This file photo shows Kim Jong-nam, Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s half-brother, in the southern Chinese city of Macau.
Since Kim’s death, relations between the two countries have steadily deteriorated, with each expelling the other’s ambassador.
Last Tuesday, North Korea
blocked all Malaysians from leaving the country until a “fair settlement” of the case was reached.
Malaysia then barred North Koreans from exiting its soil. Both countries have also scrapped visa-free travel for each other’s citizens.
Four of the seven North Korean suspects being sought by Malaysia are believed to have left the country the day Kim was killed. Police say the other three suspects, including a North Korean diplomat, are believed to be in hiding at the North Korean Embassy in Kuala Lumpur.
The attack was caught on surveillance video that showed two women going up to Kim and apparently smearing something on his face. He was dead within 20 minutes, authorities say.
Two women – one Indonesian, one Vietnamese – have been charged with murder but say they were duped into thinking they were playing a harmless prank.