Kim Jong Nam murder suspects revisit crime scene



The two women accused of killing the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un were brought back to the scene of the crime on Tuesday as part of their murder trial. Under heavily armed guard, wearing handcuffs and bulletproof vests, they were taken around the Kuala Lumpur airport in Malaysia in wheelchairs in an attempt to give the judge, prosecutors, and defense lawyers a better understanding of how the event unfolded.

Indonesian Siti Aisyah, 25, and Vietnamese citizen Doan Thi Huong, 28, have been charged with killing Kim Jong Nam on February 13 after they allegedly smeared a chemical nerve agent on his face at the airport’s budget international terminal.

The defendants and their lawyers maintain that the women were told they were participating in a prank show and that they thought the substance was harmless.

Read more: VX nerve agent 10 times more poisonous than sarin

Shortly after the incident, Kim Jong Nam died at a local hospital. The eldest son of late North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, Kim Jong Nam fell out of favor with the regime after a failed attempt to visit Tokyo Disneyland in 2001 with a fake passport. He subsequently lived in exile in Macau and had voiced muted criticism of his family’s totalitarian regime in the media.

Two suspects still at large

The high-profile trial against Siti Aisyah and Doan Thi Huong has entered its third week, after seeing 12 witnesses testify, including chemical weapons experts who testified that traces of the VX chemical nerve agent were found on the women’s clothes.

Siti Aisyah broke down in tears during the visit to the airport, while Huong appeared unwell about halfway through. They were also brought to a restaurant where Siti Aisyah was seen meeting an unidentified man, as well as the separate bathrooms where the women went to wash their hands after the attack.

Both women were observed meeting with two men, identified as Mr. Chang and Mr. Y, ahead of the incident. The men have also been charged with the murder, though they remain at large.

es/se (AP, Reuters)


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