Jakarta: Indonesia’s foreign ministry said a woman arrested in Malaysia for suspected involvement in the killing of the North Korean leader’s half brother is an Indonesian citizen and officials have requested consular access to her.
Malaysian police have identified the woman as Siti Aishah, 25, from Serang in Banten, a province that neighbors the Indonesian capital, Jakarta. She was arrested early today.
The ministry said in a statement it concluded the woman is Indonesian based on data provided by Malaysian authorities and the Indonesian Embassy in Malaysia.
“Following that verification, the embassy has requested consular access to the Government of Malaysia to provide assistance in order to ensure her legal rights,” the statement said.
Malaysian police have now arrested two women and one man in the death of Kim Jong Nam, who was reportedly poisoned on Monday by a pair of female assassins as he waited for a flight in Malaysia.
Malaysian police said the second woman they arrested had Vietnamese travel documents. Vietnamese Foreign Ministry’s Deputy Spokeswoman Nguyen Phuong Tra said in a statement that Vietnamese authorities were closely coordinating with the Malaysians on the case.
An Indonesian news portal published a photo of the identification page of an Indonesian passport belonging to Siti Aisyah that differed from the details released by Malaysian police only in the spelling of the name. “Aishah” is a spelling typically used in Malaysia whereas “Aisyah” is commonly used in Indonesia.
Several million Indonesians work in Malaysia as maids and construction and plantation workers.
Investigators in Malaysia are trying to shed light on the death of Kim, which has set off waves of speculation over whether North Korea dispatched a hit squad to kill him.