Child's DNA used to confirm Kim's identity

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Child's DNA used to confirm Kim's identity

Malaysian police were able to confirm the identity of Kim Jong-nam, who was killed last month at Kuala Lumpur’s airport, using a DNA sample from one of his children, Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said Wednesday.

Zahid said police “confirmed that the identity of the body is Kim Jong-nam based on the sample taken from his child.” He did not say when and where the DNA sample was taken.

Kim is believed to have two sons and a daughter with two women living in Beijing and Macau, but it is unclear where they currently are.

Malaysian officials say Kim’s body has been embalmed to better preserve it and that Kim’s relatives will be given two to three weeks to claim it.

Deputy national police Chief Noor Rashid Ibrahim said Thursday that the family of Kim Jong-nam has given consent to the Malaysian government to decide what to do with his body.

“I was made to understand they are leaving it to our government to deal with it (body)... yes, they have given their consent,” Noor Rashid said.

Zahid also said negotiations began Monday to resolve a diplomatic standoff over the death of Kim.

Kim was holding a diplomatic passport under the name of Kim Chol when he was attacked on Feb. 13 at Kuala Lumpur airport by two women who smeared the banned VX nerve agent on his face. He died within 20 minutes.

Kim was the estranged half brother of North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-un, and relations between Malaysia and North Korea have deteriorated sharply since Kim’s death, with each expelling the other’s ambassador.

North Korea has blocked all Malaysians from leaving the country until a “fair settlement” of the case is reached. Malaysia then barred North Koreans from exiting its soil. The two countries have also scrapped visa-free travel for each other’s citizens.

National police chief Khalid Abu Bakar separately told reporters that four North Korean suspects who are believed to have fled Malaysia on the same day of killing has been put on Interpol’s red notice list, which is a request to locate and hold a person pending extradition.

Khalid did not confirm Noor Rashid’s comments.

AP

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