Only next-of-kin can request release of Kim Jong Nam's body: Malaysia

Only next-of-kin can request release of Kim Jong Nam's body: Malaysia

PUTRAJAYA: The Government will not yield to any request for Kim Jong-nam's body to be released unless it is made by his next-of-kin, says Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam.

The Health Minister confirmed that a "high-level" North Korean delegation are in the country and met with members of the Cabinet.

However, he said the Government remained firm that it would stand firm and deny the request for the body to be released to North Korea.

"They (the delegation) did not meet me. They met with other members of the Cabinet," he said.

Subramaniam also said that regardless of any requests made by the delegation, Malaysia would abide by its own protocols.

"For example, we have already identified and established the cause of death, which is due to a nerve poison. We will not change that.

"Neither are we releasing the body until it is identified. And we will only release the body to the rightful people, which is the next-of-kin," said Dr Subramaniam at a press conference before his weekly ministry post-Cabinet meeting.

He said that to date, the deceased's next-of-kin had yet to establish any official contact.

"We have not received any contact from the next-of-kin, but we are not sure if the police have. The task of contacting the relatives is left to the police and the Foreign Ministry," he said.

Subramaniam added that they wanted to find a conclusion to the issue, but were not giving a deadline or time-frame for the next-of-kin to identify and collect the body.

"If no one comes forward to identify and claim the body, then a decision will have to be made by the Government," he said.

On Feb 13, Kim Jong-nam was assassinated by two women who wiped a liquid on his face at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2.

Police have confirmed that the liquid used was the VX nerve agent.

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