Kim killed by super lethal VX nerve agent: KL police

Mr Kim Jong Nam (right) is escorted by police as he boards a plane upon his deportation from Japan at Tokyo's Narita international airport, on May 4, 2001.
Mr Kim Jong Nam (right) is escorted by police as he boards a plane upon his deportation from Japan at Tokyo's Narita international airport, on May 4, 2001.PHOTO: REUTERS

KUALA LUMPUR • The poison used to kill the estranged half- brother of North Korea's leader last week was a very lethal nerve agent called VX, Malaysian police have said.

Tasteless and odourless, VX is listed as a weapon of mass destruction by the United Nations. A dose as small as 10mg is enough to kill an adult in minutes, experts say.

Two female suspects now in police custody wiped the poison on Mr Kim's face at Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2, Malaysia's police chief Khalid Abu Bakar told reporters yesterday.

Preliminary analysis of samples taken from Mr Kim's skin and eyes identified the poison, Tan Sri Khalid said, adding that one of the women had vomited after the attack. Mr Khalid also said the airport would be checked to make sure there are no traces of the chemical.

Mr Kim's death has sparked a war of words between Malaysia and North Korea, whose ambassador accused Kuala Lumpur of colluding with Pyongyang's enemies to frame his country.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 25, 2017, with the headline 'Kim killed by super lethal VX nerve agent: KL police'. Print Edition | Subscribe