Video shows the two women accosting Kim Jong Nam at Kuala Lumpur International Airport
A high-level delegation from North Korea arrived in Malaysia on Tuesday
Two women will be charged with the murder of the estranged half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, officials in Malaysia said.
Siti Aisyah, an Indonesian, and Doan Thi Huong from Vietnam, were detained after closed circuit television showed them accosting Kim Jong Nam at Kuala Lumpur International Airport on February 13.
Police say the women rubbed a highly toxic VX nerve agent on Kim’s face before running away. He died on the way to a hospital less than 20 minutes later.
Malaysia’s Attorney General Mohamed Apandi Ali told CNN the women will be officially charged on Wednesday. Intentional murder is punishable by a mandatory death sentence in Malaysia.
Aisyah has denied she killed Kim on purpose, telling Indonesian officials she believed she was working on a prank show and was smearing Kim’s face with baby oil.
But Malaysian police chief Khalid Abu Bakar claims both women knew they were swabbing Kim’s face with a deadly nerve toxin. A third suspect, Ri Jong Chol, a North Korean citizen, is still in custody.
Criminal and constitutional lawyer Syahredzan Johan told CNN he expects both suspects will enter their pleas on Wednesday and there could be a trial within two months, due to the international attention.
North Korean diplomats arrive
A high-level delegation from North Korea arrived in Malaysia on Tuesday as Kim’s murder continues to cause diplomatic tensions between the two countries.
Malaysia has refused to release the body of Kim, who South Korean intelligence claims was killed on the direct orders of the North Korean leader.
After arriving in the Malaysian capital, former North Korean Deputy UN ambassador Ri Tong Il said the delegation had come to negotiate the return of the body.
He said they would discuss the “question of the release of the DPRK citizen arrested by Malaysian police related to the above incident, (and) the development of friendly relations between DPRK and the Malaysian government.”
Malaysian authorities have requested a DNA sample from the victim’s next of kin before they will release the body.
North Korea has denied involvement in Kim’s murder and blamed South Korea for attempting to tie Pyongyang to the killing.