Kim's identity confirmed through son's DNA: Malaysia

Indo Asian News Service

Kuala Lumpur, March 15 (IANS) Malaysia's Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said on Wednesday that the man assassinated in Malaysia last month has been confirmed as Kim Jong-nam based on the DNA sample obtained from his son.

"I again confirm that it is Kim Jong-nam... This is based on a sample taken from his child," Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who is also Malaysian Interior Minister, told reporters here.

The authorities officially revealed the identity of Kim Jong-nam on Friday but did not specify whether it was confirmed through a DNA match or some other procedure, reported Xinhua news agency.

On February 13, Kim Jong-nam -- who was travelling with a diplomatic passport under the name of Kim Chol -- was assassinated at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport, from where he was due to board a flight to Macau.

According to police investigations, two Asian women -- an Indonesian and a Vietnamese -- put highly toxic, banned VX nerve agent on Kim's face and he died on the way to the hospital less than half an hour later.

Both women were arrested and charged with murder.

The police are also looking for seven North Koreans -- three whom they believe are hiding in North Korea's embassy in Kuala Lumpur and four others who allegedly hired the women and left the country the same day the murder took place.

Meanwhile, Malaysia's interior minister also said that formal talks with North Korea began to find a solution to bring back the nine Malaysian nationals who were barred by Pyongyang from leaving after diplomatic spat between the two countries escalated following the investigation into Kim's killing.

--IANS

soni/vt