China foils plot to kill Kim Jong-un’s exiled nephew and arrests North Korean assassins planning to carry out attack

Tuesday, October 31, 2017
By Paul Martin

Two members of a North Korean assassination team were arrested in China
The group of seven were aiming to kill Kim Jong-un’s nephew, Kim Han-sol, 22
The other members of the plot are being questioned by officials near Beijing
Kim Han-sol’s father, Kim Jong-nam, was poisoned in an airport earlier this year

31 October 2017

China has detained several North Koreans who were allegedly plotting to assassinate Kim Jong-un’s exile nephew – the son of his half-brother who was poisoned earlier this year in a Malaysia airport.

Two of the seven-member assassination team plotting to kill 22-year-old Kim Han-sol were arrested in Beijing last week.

The plot was stopped after officials increased security during China’s 19th National Congress of the Communist Party, which ran for seven days from October 18.

Members of the assassination team who were not arrested are being questioned by Chinese officials, South Korea’s JoongAng Ilbo newspaper reported.

‘Special operatives belonging to the North’s reconnaissance team penetrated [China] to remove Kim Han-sol, but some of them were arrested last week by the Chinese Ministry of National Security and are currently under investigation at facilities outside Beijing,’ a source told the newspaper.

China’s Foreign Ministry has yet to confirm the arrests publicly.

Kim Han-sol’s father, Kim Jong-nam, was fatally poisoned by an advanced VX nerve agent at Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Malaysia in February.

The two women accused of poisoning him were allegedly working for North Korea at the time.

The defendants at the Shah Alam High Court – Siti Aisyah, 25, of Indonesia and Doan Thi Huong, 29, of Vietnam – say they are innocent, duped by the men into participating in the s attack, which they say they thought was a harmless prank for a TV show.

If found guilty, they face a mandatory death sentence. In Malaysia, that means they would be hanged.

But since the trial began on October 2, the alleged role of the four missing suspects has come to dominate the proceedings.

Both the prosecutors and the defense team say a lot more is going to be revealed in the weeks ahead about the men, who outside of court they acknowledge are believed to be North Korean citizens.

The prosecution this week also stressed that authorities reserve the right to take more formal action against the four if they can gather enough evidence.

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