Hanoi – The stepmother of a Vietnamese woman, accused of murdering North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s half-brother in Malaysia, on Tuesday said her stepdaughter should be freed after charges were dropped against an alleged co-conspirator.
Vietnamese national Doan Thi Huong, 30, and Indonesian national Siti Aisyah, 27, were caught on CCTV cameras purportedly smearing VX nerve agent on Kim Jong Nam’s face at Kuala Lumpur’s international airport in February 2017.
The brazen killing, however, shocked the world.
Charges against Aisyah were suddenly dropped on Monday and she was released.
Nguyen Thi Vy, Huong’s stepmother, told dpa by phone from her home in northern Nam Dinh province that Aisyah’s release was “unfair.’’
“I think it is unfair because the two girls involved in the same case did the same thing, but one has been released, so why has the other not been?’’ Nguyen said.
Prosecutors argued that the two women were trained assassins, who were aware of the toxicity of the substance they were handling, noting that both suspects headed to separate bathrooms immediately after the attack.
Both women have maintained their innocence, claiming they thought they were carrying out a prank that was being secretly filmed for a reality TV show in exchange for money.
They said they had been tricked by North Korean handlers.
Speculation has swirled that the North Korean government ordered the hit on Kim Jong Nam, who was considered a threat to the legitimacy of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s rule.
However, Pyongyang has denied these allegations.