Woman Accused Of Murdering Half Brother Of North Korea's Leader Is Freed

Vietnamese Doan Thi Huong who is on trial for the killing of Kim Jong Nam the estranged half-brother of North Korea's leader is escorted as she arrives at the Department of Chemistry in Petaling Jaya

Woman Accused Of Murdering Half Brother Of North Korea's Leader Is Freed

"(He) asked Malaysia to ensure a fair trial, and to set free Doan Thi Huong", Voice of Vietnam radio reported Tuesday after Minh's call with Malaysian Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah.

They stood accused of poisoning Mr Kim Jong Nam, the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un - with liquid VX, a banned chemical weapon - in February 2017, Reuters reported.

Malaysia on Monday dropped the murder charge against her co-defendant, Indonesian Siti Aisyah, who has returned to her home village.

They have said they thought they were taking part in a prank for a TV show. During the trial, the court was shown CCTV footage of two women allegedly assaulting Kim Jong Nam while he prepared to check in for a flight.

Her lawyers have now asked that her case be adjourned and charges against her be dropped, too.

Interpol had issued a red notice for four North Koreans who were identified as suspects by Malaysian police and had left the country hours after the murder.

Salim said trial judge Azmi Arifin had ordered Huong to make her defence on Thursday if there was no response from the AG.

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"[I was] shocked at first, I couldn't believe it", Aisyah said of her release. Siti said she was happy to meet Jokowi. He had been living overseas for years but could have been seen as a threat to Kim Jong Un's rule.

Kim Jong Nam had lived in exile in Macau for several years before the killing, having fled his homeland after his half-brother became North Korea's leader in 2011 following their father's death. Pyongyang denies the accusation.

Huong's lawyer, Hisyam Teh Poh Teik, said after Monday's court session that Huong felt Aisyah's discharge was unfair if she was still going to be held. They did not give any reason for the remarkable retreat in their case against her.

"Until today, we do not know what were the exceptional circumstances that were needed for the attorney-general to review the charge against Siti Aisyah".

In the courtroom yesterday morning, when the prosecution announced its surprise decision, Siti Aisyah turned to hug her Vietnamese codefendant, both in tears.

In a separate statement on Wednesday, the government said Justice Minister Le Thanh Long had sent a letter to Malaysia's attorney-general, Tommy Thomas, asking Malaysia to free Huong. "They can always use the excuse (which they did) she was an innocent player manipulated by North Korea".

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