North Korea leader’s brother slain at air­port

Cape Breton Post - - WORLD - THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

The half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un was as­sas­si­nated at an air­port in Kuala Lumpur, telling med­i­cal work­ers be­fore he died en route to a hos­pi­tal that he had been at­tacked with a chem­i­cal spray, a Malaysian of­fi­cial said Tues­day.

Kim Jong Nam, 46, was at­tacked Mon­day in the shop­ping con­course at the air­port and had not gone through im­mi­gra­tion yet for his flight to Ma­cau, said the se­nior gov­ern­ment of­fi­cial, who spoke on con­di­tion of anonymity be­cause the case in­volves sen­si­tive diplo­macy.

He was taken to the air­port clinic and then died on the way to the hos­pi­tal.

Kim Jong Nam was es­tranged from his younger brother, the North Korean leader. He had been tipped by out­siders to suc­ceed their dic­ta­tor fa­ther, but re­port­edly fell out of favour when he was caught try­ing to en­ter Ja­pan on a false pass­port in 2001, say­ing he wanted to visit Tokyo Dis­ney­land.

He was be­lieved to have been liv­ing re­cently in Ma­cau, Sin­ga­pore and Malaysia.

Mul­ti­ple South Korean me­dia re­ports, cit­ing un­named sources, said Kim Jong Nam was killed at the air­port by two women. TV Cho­sun, cit­ing uniden­ti­fied “mul­ti­ple gov­ern­ment sources,” said the women were be­lieved to be North Korean agents. It said they fled in a taxi and were be­ing sought by Malaysian po­lice.

In Wash­ing­ton, the State Department said it was aware of re­ports of Kim Jong Nam’s death but de­clined to com­ment, re­fer­ring ques­tions to Malaysian author­i­ties.

Kim Jong Nam and Kim Jong Un have the same fa­ther, late dic­ta­tor Kim Jong Il, but dif­fer­ent mothers.

Since tak­ing power in late 2011, Kim Jong Un has ex­e­cuted or purged a slew of high-level gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials in what the South Korean gov­ern­ment has de­scribed as a “reign of ter­ror.” The most spec­tac­u­lar among them was the 2013 ex­e­cu­tion by anti-air­craft fire of his un­cle, Jang Song Thaek, once con­sid­ered the coun­try’s sec­ond most pow­er­ful man, for what the North al­leged was trea­son.

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