Where in the world is Kim Han-sol? Kim Jong-nam’s son rumoured to have arrived in Malaysia
Malaysian authorities have been insisting on a DNA match before releasing Jong-nam’s body, so Han-sol may have arrived to provide it
Kim Han-sol, the 20-something son of Kim Jong-nam, is believed to have arrived in Kuala Lumpur on Monday night. Local media reported he was on a flight from Macau, where the family is based, to the Malaysian capital and staked out the airport for hours. But there was no sign of him, suggesting he may have been whisked out a private exit to avoid the media scrum.
Jong-Nam, who is the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, was attacked last Monday at the very same airport by two women, said to be tied to North Korea. He died on his way to the Putrajaya Hospital.
Malaysian authorities have been insisting on a DNA match before releasing the body, so Han-sol could have arrived to provide it.
Han-sol, born in Pyongyang in 1995, moved to Macau at a young age after his father reportedly fell out of favour with the late Kim Jong-il in the early 2000s.
Police presence at the National Forensic Medicine Institute at Kuala Lumpur Hospital, where Jong-nam’s body is being kept, suddenly intensified on Monday evening.
At 1.40am, four 4WD vehicles carrying more than 10 Special Task Force on Organised Crime personnel were seen entering the gated forensic department premises.
Also seen was a team of policemen, led by Dang Wangi district police chief ACP Mohd Shukri Kaman.
Several police vehicles were also seen entering and leaving the premises throughout the night and early morning.
At 4am, about 100 members of the local and foreign press were seen camped outside the building, hoping to catch a glimpse of Han-sol – but, after several false alarms throughout the night and early morning, the younger Kim had yet to emerge.
Local media camped at the airport had endured a fruitless wait. More than 50 members of the press – local and foreign – had gathered from 6pm hoping to catch a glimpse of Han-sol.
An anonymous passenger, who was on board flight AK8321, said he could not recall seeing anyone on the same flight resembling Han-sol.
“There weren’t many youngsters on the flight although there was one boy wearing spectacles,” the man said.
An AirAsia female flight attendant and other airport staff interviewed also remained tight-lipped when approached by the media to clarify if they had seen Han-sol. The flight attendant, who declined to be named, said she was not aware of Han-sol’s presence.
“I operated the flight from Macau and I did not know about this,” she said, adding that she was surprised to learn about the killing of Jong-nam.
The Malaysian Health Minister has indicated autopsy results for Jong-nam's body could be released as early as Wednesday.
Deputy Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Noor Rashid Ibrahim on Sunday said that only the deceased’s next-of-kin are eligible to step forward to identify and claim the body.
Reporting by New Straits Times, The Washington Post