Hanoi seeks Vietnamese suspect's release in Kim killing

15 March, 2019, 15:39 | Author: Myra Gill
  • Malaysia releases Indonesian suspected of killing Kim Jong Nam

Vietnamese Foreign minister Pham Binh Minh spoke Tuesday night with his Malaysian counterpart Saifuddin Abdullah to begin diplomatic measures that could lead to the release of Doan Thi Huong, Efe news reported.

She had been on trial alongside a Vietnamese woman, Doan Thi Huong, who was left distraught as she was not freed at the same time.

South Korea accuses the North of plotting the murder of Mr Kim Jong Nam, who was once seen as heir apparent to the North Korean leadership.

Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said he is not aware of any G to G exchange with regards to Indonesian Siti Aisyah being released and her murder charge dropped from the Kim Jong Nam's murder trial.

Siti Aisyah and Huong have maintained that they believed they had been hired to participate in a reality TV prank show.

Siti and Huong were arrested after security cameras in the airport showed the two women smearing the toxic agent on Kim's face.

Huong's murder trial is to resume Thursday, and prosecutors are expected to reply to a request by Huong's lawyers for the government to withdraw the murder charge against her as well. They have gone through the proceedings and the charge was being withdrawn, so this is being done according to the law.

Gooi Soon Seng, Siti Aisyah's lawyer, said his client was "a scapegoat".

"[I was] shocked at first, I couldn't believe it", Aisyah said of her release. "There was clear evidence and she (Aisyah) confessed", James Chin, a Malaysia specialist at the University of Tasmania, told AFP in a message.

North Korea has denied any involvement in the plot and argued that the death of North Korean citizen Kim Chol - as Kim Jong-Nam's name appears in the passport he used - was due to a heart attack. He had been living overseas for years but could have been seen as a threat to Kim Jong Un's rule. Pyongyang denies the accusation. "We are making representation to the attorney general for Doan to be taken equally.there must be justice".

Mahathir said that he was "unaware of any negotiations" between Indonesia and Malaysia on the issue, rejecting allegations that the two countries have been bargaining for the Siti's release.

A defence lawyer also asked for an adjournment in the case against Huong to submit a request that charges be dropped against her too.



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