KUALA LUMPUR, June 12 (Reuters): Malay-sia will reopen its embassy in Pyongyang, Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has said.
He is suggesting an end to the diplomatic row over the assassination of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's half-brother in Kuala Lumpur last year.
"Yes, we will reopen the embassy," Mahathir said in an interview with the Nikkei Asian Review published on Monday during his trip to Japan.
Malaysia's once-close ties with North Korea were severely downgraded after Kim Jong Nam was killed at a Kuala Lumpur airport in February 2017 when two women smeared his face with VX nerve agent, which the United Nations lists as a weapon of mass destruction.
During their trial which is ongoing, the women said they were tricked into believing they were part of a reality show and did not know they were handling poison.
The United States and South Korea have said the murder was orchestrated by Pyongyang.
After Kim Jong Nam's death, North Korea's ambassador to Malaysia questioned the credibility of the police probe and insisted he was an ordinary citizen who died of a heart attack.
Malaysia then recalled its ambassador to North Korea, banned its citizens from traveling to the North and canceled visa-free entry for North Koreans.