North Korean ambassador summoned by Malaysia's MFA over Kim Jong Nam murder

North Korea's ambassador to Malaysia Kang Chol addresses the media in Kuala Lumpur on Feb 18, 2017.
North Korea's ambassador to Malaysia Kang Chol addresses the media in Kuala Lumpur on Feb 18, 2017.PHOTO: AFP

KUALA LUMPUR -  North Korea's ambassador to Malaysia Kang Chol has been summoned to appear at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Monday morning (Feb 20) after the envoy accused Malaysia on Friday of conspiring with the secretive nation's enemies over the murder of Mr Kim Jong Nam, the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Sources told The Straits Times Mr Kang has been called up for a closed-door meeting, and a statement will only be issued in the afternoon.

"As of now, only the police and the foreign ministry can comment," a source said, referring to the alleged assassination.

Mr Kang had twice travelled to the Kuala Lumpur Hospital on Friday, in apparently unsuccessful attempts to retrieve Mr Kim's body. He told reporters it had objected to an autopsy as the deceased held a diplomatic passport and was under consular protection.

"This strongly suggests that the Malaysian side is trying to conceal something and deceive us and that they are colluding with the hostile forces who are desperate to harm us," he said.

 

Police insist they will release the body only to Mr Kim's next-of-kin.

South Korea has repeatedly accused its northern neighbour of ordering the murder of Mr Kim, 47, who is estranged from his sibling.

Malaysia has arrested four suspects in the dramatic incident, where Mr Kim was attacked by two women who wiped liquid believed to be poisonous on his face just before he was about to board a plane to Macau on Feb 13. He died on the way to hospital.

One of the four is a North Korean IT worker based in Kuala Lumpur, while another four North Korean suspects fled Malaysia on the day of the attack.

shannont@sph.com.sg