Woman arrested over assassination of Kim Jong-un's half brother

Police in the Malaysian capital said the suspect was detained at the airport.

The Malaysian police report issued on Tuesday night confirmed a 46-year-old North Korean man, who was traveling with a passport under the name of Kim Chol, died en route to a hospital after seeking medical help in the Kuala Lumpur International Airport. Police said an autopsy was planned. An effigy of his heir, Kim Jong-il, stands next to the statue.

Last year South Korea warned of possible North Korean assassination attempts on its territory. The authorities have stated that the body will be handed over to North Korean authorities.

Repeated calls to South Korea's spy agency seeking comment went unanswered.

According to the Malaysian government official, Kim Jong Nam was in a shopping concourse and had not yet gone through security for a planned flight to Macau when the incident occurred.

A spokesman for South Korea's Unification Ministry declined to disclose how Seoul determined that the deceased was indeed Kim Jong Nam, citing the ongoing Malaysian police investigation.

The suspects were picked up separately Wednesday and early Thursday and were identified using closed-circuit TV footage from Kuala Lumpur International Airport, where Kim Jong Nam suddenly fell ill Monday morning.

Investigators are trying to piece together the details of a death that set off a torrent of speculation over whether Kim Jong Un dispatched a hit squad to kill his older sibling, Kim Jong Nam. He is believed to have been born May 10, 1971.

South Korea's Institute for National Security in December 2016 claimed that Kim Jong Un has ordered the execution of 340 people since he came to power in December 2011.

Thousands of North Koreans turned up at the hill to lay a flower, bouquet or basket - all featuring Kimjongilia, the red flower named after the late leader - and bowed, AFP reported.

Jong-Nam, known as an advocate of reform in the North, once told a Japanese newspaper that he opposed his country's dynastic system of power.

Kim Jong Nam, who was older, was believed to be close to his uncle, Jang Song Thaek, who was the country's second most powerful man before being executed on Kim Jong Un's orders in 2013.

"Even though there was only a very low possibility of Kim Jong Nam becoming the leader of North Korea, China likely thought it would not hurt to protect him as long as that possibility existed".

Kuala Lumpur: Malaysia will return the body of Kim Jong-Nam, the estranged half-brother of North Korean leader, Kim Jong-Un.

The late North Korean President Kim Jong Il fathered his first son with actress Song Hye Rim.

Police said a post-mortem had been completed, with the results yet to be made public. The Independent reported Kim Jong Il was so embarrassed by his son's actions that he cancelled a looming trip to China.

  • Leroy Wright