North Korea calls for release of Kim Jong-nam murder suspects
Bangkok : The North Korean Embassy in Malaysia called for the immediate release of the suspects detained in relation to the alleged murder in Kuala Lumpur of Kim Jong-nam, the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.
Malaysian police have not found any evidence implicating the three detained -- one Indonesian, one Malaysian and a North Korean -- in the nine days that have passed since the incident, Efe news cited a statement by the Embassy.
"They (the police) should immediately release the innocent females from Vietnam and Indonesia as well as a DPRK (Democratic People's Republic of Korea) Ri Jong-chol who was arrested unreasonably," the statement read.
The Embassy argued that the police investigation was based on CCTV footage from the Kuala Lumpur airport in which one of the women appeared to apply poison on the victim's face with her hands, and questioned how it was possible for the suspects to still be alive after the incident.
"This means that the liquid they daubed for a joke is not a poison and that there is another cause of death for the deceased," the statement added.
According to Malaysian police, the two women at the airport knew they were dealing with a toxic product and they had earlier visited commercial centers in the city to practice how they would apply poison on the victim.
On February 13, Kim Jong-nam, who was travelling on a diplomatic passport under the name of Kim Chol, was apparently attacked by two women at Kuala Lumpur airport, later dying on his way to the hospital.
The South Korean government has maintained that Kim Jong-nam was assassinated by the communist regime in Pyongyang.
The petition from the North Korean embassy comes on the same day that Malaysian police requested to interview two North Koreans, including an official at the embassy in Kuala Lumpur, in connection with the suspected murder.
Malaysian authorities, who are yet to formally identify the victim, have not yet clarified the cause of death but are expected to release the autopsy results Wednesday.