Malaysia may have been good hideout for Kim Jong Nam, say observers

Malaysia may have been good hideout for Kim Jong Nam, say observers
People watching a TV screen showing a news report about the assassination of Kim Jong Nam, at a train station in Seoul on Feb 14, 2017.
PHOTO: Reuters

SEOUL - It was at Malaysia's Kuala Lumpur International Airport that Kim Jong Nam, the estranged elder half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, was killed - reportedly by two unidentified women presumed to be North Korean undercover agents.

CCTV cameras at KLIA2 have captured a clearer image of a woman believed to be one of the assassins who killed Kim Jong-nam, the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.Photo: The Star/Asia News Network

Read also: Clearer image of Jong-nam's alleged killer caught on CCTV
North Korean embassy cars seen at KL hospital mortuary
'Jong-nam did not respond to advice to seek asylum in S. Korea'

Over the past years, the North Korean figure has made frequent appearances in Kuala Lumpur, triggering rumours he had permanently moved to the country around 2012.

This file photo taken on February 11, 2007 shows North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il's eldest son, Kim Jong-Nam.Photo: AFP

In January 2014, he was reported by a Japanese media outlet as eating in a Korean restaurant downtown. In December 2012, a South Korean outlet even attempted to interview him at a hotel lobby in the city.

Though the precise time and reason of Jong Nam's stay there at the time are unknown, observers have suggested that Malaysia may have been a good hideout for the estranged Kim. The country not only holds diplomatic ties with both Koreas, but is located within six to seven hours by flight from the Korean Peninsula's western coastline.

Malaysia is one of a dwindling number of countries that has close relations with North Korea, which is under tightening global sanctions over its nuclear tests and ballistic missile launches, the latest of which took place on Sunday.

Malaysians and North Koreans can also visit each other's country without visas.

Half-brother of N Korean leader assassinated in Malaysia

Read also: 
China watching developments closely after death of North Korean leader's half-brother Kim Jong Nam

Jong-nam fell out of favour after fake passport episode
Kim Jong-Nam, the 'Little General' who fell from grace
Kim half-brother pleaded for his life: Seoul MPs
World abuzz with why, how and what killed Kim Jong-nam
Kim Jong-nam murder: More journos arrive at Putrajaya Hospital morgue

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