Kim Jong-nam killing: ‘VX haughtiness agent’ found on his face

Media captionRupert Wingfield Hayes: Three reasons because a use of VX is so extraordinary

Kim Jong-nam, a half-brother of North Korea’s leader, was killed by a rarely poisonous haughtiness agent, says Malaysia.

Mr Kim died final week after dual women accosted him quickly in a check-in gymnasium during a Kuala Lumpur airport.

Malaysian toxicology reports prove he was pounded regulating VX haughtiness agent, that is personal as a arms of mass dump by a United Nations.

There is widespread guess that North Korea was obliged for a attack, that it fiercely denies.

It responded furiously to Malaysia’s insistence on conducting a autopsy hearing and has indicted Malaysia of carrying “sinister” purposes.

What does a toxicology news say?

Malaysia’s military arch Khalid Abu Bakar pronounced on Friday that a participation of a haughtiness representative had been rescued in swabs taken from Mr Kim’s eyes and face.

One of a women Mr Kim interacted with during a airfield on 13 Feb had also depressed ill with queasiness afterwards, he added.

The authorities contend they intend to fumigate a airfield and areas a suspects are famous to have visited. VX is a v-type haughtiness agent, that means a piece can sojourn fatal for prolonged duration of time.

Mr Khalid pronounced other exhibits were still underneath investigate and that military were questioning how a criminialized piece competence have entered Malaysia.

“If a volume of a chemical brought in was small, it would be formidable for us to detect,” he said.

What is a lethal VX haughtiness agent?

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Science Photo Library RF / LAGUNA DESIGN

Image caption

Molecular indication of VX haughtiness representative shows atoms represented as spheres

  • The many manly of a famous chemical crusade agents, it is a clear, amber-coloured, greasy glass that is uninspired and odourless
  • Works by perspicacious a skin and disrupting a delivery of haughtiness impulses – a dump on a skin can kill in minutes. Low doses can means eye pain, confused vision, fatigue and vomiting
  • It can be disseminated in a mist or effluvium when used as a chemical weapon, or used to pervert water, food, and rural products
  • VX can be engrossed into a physique by inhalation, ingestion, skin contact, or eye contact
  • Clothing can lift VX for about 30 mins after hit with a vapour, that can display other people
  • Official chemical name is S-2 Diisoprophylaminoethyl methylphosphonothiolate and it is criminialized by a 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention

Read some-more about a rarely poisonous substance

How could it have killed Mr Kim?

Media captionCCTV footage appears to uncover a impulse Kim Jong-nam is pounded

Bruce Bennett, a weapons consultant during a investigate sanatorium a Rand Corporation, told a BBC it would have taken usually a little volume of a piece to kill Mr Kim.

He suggests a little apportion of VX – usually a dump – was expected put on cloths used by a enemy to hold his face. A apart mist might have been used as a diversion.

Mr Khalid has formerly pronounced a fact a lady who accosted Mr Kim immediately went to rinse her hands showed she was “very aware” that she had been doing a toxin.

It would have begun inspiring his shaken complement immediately, causing initial jolt and afterwards genocide within minutes.

Read some-more from consultant Bruce Bennett

Who was Kim Jong-nam?

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Image caption

North Korea has not identified a male who died as Kim Jong-nam, usually as a North Korean citizen

The well-travelled and multilingual oldest son of late North Korean personality Kim Jong-il, he was once deliberate a intensity destiny leader. He has lived abroad for years and was bypassed in foster of his half-brother, Kim Jong-un.

Kim Jong-nam: North Korea’s censor in exile

How did he die?

A lady was seen in CCTV footage coming Mr Kim and wiping something opposite his face. He sought medical assistance during a airport, observant someone had splashed or sprayed him with liquid.

He had a seizure and died on a approach to hospital.

His physique stays in a hospital’s mortuary, amid a tactful brawl over who should explain it.

Kim Jong-nam: Main players in puzzling killing

Who did it?

Malaysia says it was clearly an conflict by North Korean agents. Four people are in custody, including one North Korean and a dual women he interacted with during a airport. Seven North Koreans are being sought, including a diplomat.

Mr Kim had been travelling on a pass underneath a name Kim Chol. North Korea has nonetheless to endorse that a defunct was indeed Kim Jong-nam.

North Korea’s story of unfamiliar assassinations

On what seemed to be a initial anxiety to a box in a North’s state media, Pyongyang pronounced on Thursday usually that Malaysia was obliged for a genocide of one of a citizens.

It also indicted Malaysia of perplexing to politicise a lapse of his body, observant a insistence on securing DNA samples from Mr Kim’s family before handing a physique over was “absurd”.

Does North Korea have VX?

North Korea is one of usually 6 countries not to have sealed a Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) arms control covenant banning a production, stockpiling and use of chemical weapons.

According to a Nuclear Threat Initiative project, however, North Korea is suspicion to have a third largest save of chemical weapons, after a US and Russia.

South Korea’s counterclaim method estimated in a 2014 Defence White Paper that North Korea has somewhere between 2,500 and 5,000 tonnes in stock.

Defence experts have identified VX as one of a haughtiness agents among a stockpile.