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Antidote vials add twist to Kim murder trial

The Associated Press

Defendant Doan Thi Huong, second left, is escorted by police from the court house in Shah Alam, outside Kuala Lumpur, on Thursday.

Reuters KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) — Kim Jong Nam, the murdered half-brother of North Korea’s leader, had a dozen vials of antidote for lethal nerve agent VX in his sling bag on the day he was poisoned, a Malaysian court was told this week.

Two women, Indonesian Siti Aisyah and Doan Thi Huong, a Vietnamese, are charged with conspiring with four North Korean fugitives in the murder, making use of banned chemical weapon VX at the Kuala Lumpur international airport on Feb. 13.

The vials contained atropine, an antidote for poisons such as VX and insecticides, toxicologist Dr K. Sharmilah told the court on Wednesday, state news agency Bernama said.

However, she did not know if the vials were marked in Korean, she said when cross-examined by Siti Aisyah’s lawyer, Gooi Soon Seng.

Kim, who was living in exile in Macau, had criticized his family’s dynastic rule of North Korea, and his brother had issued a standing order for his execution, some South Korean lawmakers have said.

Malaysia was forced to return Kim’s body and allow the suspects hiding in the embassy to return home, in exchange for the release of nine Malaysians barred from leaving Pyongyang.

On Thursday, a police witness told the court Huong had the opportunity to dispose of a T-shirt and short skirt she had worn during the alleged attack.

The T-shirt, bearing the word ‘LOL,’ and the skirt could have easily been found in a pile of clothes in the hotel room where Huong stayed, the witness, Nasrol Sain Hamzah, an assistant superintendent, told Huong’s lawyer, Hisyam Teh Poh Teik.

Earlier, Nasrol told the court that he needed Huong to point out the clothes which had been concealed when the police raided.

Defense lawyers say Siti Aisyah and Huong, arrested in Kuala Lumpur within days of the killing, were duped into thinking they were playing a prank for a reality TV show and did not know they were poisoning Kim.

North Korea has denied accusations by South Korean and U.S. officials that Kim Jong Un’s regime was behind the killing.

The court hearings, which have run more than a month, are to resume on Jan. 22. Speech

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