Malaysia PM defends release of Indonesian in N. Korea case

Vietnam is urging Malaysia to release Doan Thi Huong the second woman accused of killing the estranged half brother of North Korea’s leader

Vietnam is urging Malaysia to release Doan Thi Huong the second woman accused of killing the estranged half brother of North Korea’s leader

Vietnam today asked Malaysia to free the Vietnamese woman charged with assassinating the North Korean leader's half-brother in Kuala Lumpur, a day after her Indonesian co-accused was suddenly released, AFP reported.

The Straits Times reported that Malaysia made a decision to drop the murder charge against Ms Siti after taking into account the good relations between Malaysia and Indonesia, it was revealed yesterday.

At the news conference in Kuala Lumpur, Mr Yasonna said that in his letter to Malaysia, he gave three reasons why the prosecution should drop its charges against Ms Aisyah, and these included that she was a victim of deception and had nothing to gain from committing the act. Doan's lawyer says he plans to request that the murder charge against her also be dropped.

The pair always denied murder, insisting they were tricked by North Korean spies into carrying out the Cold War-style hit using a toxic nerve agent and thought it was just a prank. Four North Korean suspects who had been wanted in the case fled Malaysia after Kim was killed.

Indonesian Siti Aisyah left smiles next to her lawyer Gooi Soon Seng after a press conference at Indonesian Embassy in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Monday
Malaysia frees Indonesian woman accused of Kim Jong Nam’s poisoning

"I feel so happy".

Prosecutors told the court that they had been instructed to withdraw the charge against Siti Aisyah.

"She is entitled to the same kind of consideration as Aisyah", he said.

Vietnam provided legal counsel to Huong, but has refrained from publicly lobbying for her release until today.

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Kim was the eldest son in the current generation of North Korea's ruling family. But the court agreed to resume proceedings on Thursday instead, pending a reply from the attorney-general to the request that charges against her also be withdrawn.

"Ms Aisyah was led to believe that her actions were for a reality show". Pyongyang has denied the accusation.

"Where is the principle of equality? Both of them were charged on the same evidence, the defence was called on fairly the same grounds", said Mr Salim Bashir, one of her lawyers. Although the two women were being tried together, the cases against them were separate, and the court had asked the Indonesian woman to present her defence first.

"This is a decision made by the court".

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Accompanied by Indonesian officials, Ms Aisyah was yesterday flown to Jakarta, arriving at 5.30pm local time.

"After studying the case thoroughly, we sent letters to the Attorney-General of Malaysia and met with him and Prime Minister Mahathir last August", Laoly told reporters with Siti Aisyah shortly after landing in Jakarta.

The Indonesian ministry said that during the past two years, Aisyah's plight was raised in "every bilateral Indonesia-Malaysia meeting", including at the presidential level, the vice presidential level and in regular meetings of the foreign minister and other ministers with their Malaysian counterparts.

"Miss Aisyah was deceived and had no awareness whatsoever that she was being used as an intelligence tool of North Korea", he wrote. "We are making representation to the attorney general for Doan to be taken equally.there must be justice".

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