Published: Mon, March 11, 2019
Global Media | By Garry Long

Woman Freed After Charges Dropped in Killing of Kim Jong Un’s Half-Brother

Woman Freed After Charges Dropped in Killing of Kim Jong Un’s Half-Brother

"Siti Aisyah is freed", judge Azmin Ariffin told the court, as he approved a request.

"I did not expect it", a visibly elated Aisyah told reporters as she was ushered into a auto outside the court. "My mind is blank", a distraught Huong told reporters through a translator after Aisyah left.

"I feel very happy", she said later at a news conference at the Indonesian Embassy.

The women had always denied murder, saying they were tricked by North Korean spies into carrying out the Cold War-style hit using VX nerve agent and believed it was a prank for a reality TV show.

Prosecutor Iskandar Ahmad said the discharge not amounting to acquittal means Ms Aisyah can be recharged but there are no such plans for now. The judge's decision came after prosecutors said they wanted to withdraw the charge.

Malaysia chose to drop the murder charge against the Indonesian suspect in the Kim Jong Nam case after taking into account the good relations between Malaysia and Indonesia, it was revealed on Monday (March 11) following the surprise development in the case that has gripped the world.

Huong and Aisyah were captured on surveillance footage smearing the DPRK citizen's face with the banned VX nerve agent on February 13, 2017, as he waited to board a plane to Macao at the crowded Kuala Lumpur International Airport, killing him within 20 minutes. "She can leave now", he said.

Prosecutors in court did not say why they were dropping charges.

Aisyah is expected to return home to Indonesia Monday evening, as officials make preparations for her departure.

"Miss Aisyah was deceived and had no awareness whatsoever that she was being used as an intelligence tool of North Korea", Yasonna wrote.

Siti Aisyah was on trial for the killing of Kim Jong Nam the estranged half-brother of North Korea's leader
Kim Jong-nam murder: suspect Siti Aisyah released after charge dropped

Meanwhile, Huong said she was shocked by the development.

Siti Aisyah, who was smiling throughout the press conference, had only gratitude to everyone around her.

"Until today, we do not know what were the exceptional circumstances that were needed for the attorney-general to review the charge against Siti Aisyah".

It was a surprise move as the Shah Alam High Court, outside Kuala Lumpur, had been due only to hear Vietnamese accused Doan Thi Huong testify on Monday.

"She is confident and ready to give her version of the story".

Lawyers for the women have previously said they were pawns in a political assassination with clear links to the North Korean embassy in Kuala Lumpur, and that the prosecution failed to show the women had any intention to kill.

The prosecutor in the case requested the murder charge be dropped, without giving a reason.

Malaysian officials have never officially accused North Korea and have made it clear they don't want the trial politicized.

Last year, a judge called for the women to enter their defense, saying there was evidence that they were part of a "well-planned conspiracy" with four North Korean men to kill Kim.

Some South Korean lawmakers said the North Korean regime had ordered the assassination of Kim Jong Nam, who had been critical of his family's dynastic rule.

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