North Korea slaps temporary exit ban on Malaysians

The bitter diplomatic argument between North Korea and Malaysia over the harming loss of life of leader Kim Jong-Un’s alienated half-brother escalated considerably Tuesday, with Pyongyang saying it had prohibited Malaysians from leaving North Korea.

That was followed quickly by Malaysia saying North Korean embassy employees were prohibited from leaving its country. Malaysia had already removed the North Korean ambassador on Monday. On Monday, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said the decision to get rid of Kang sent a message.

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The Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in the report said the Foreign Ministry informed the Malaysian Embassy in Pyongyang that it will not allow Malaysians remaining in North Korea to leave the country until the protection of North Korean diplomats and people in Malaysia is “fully assured through the reasonable agreement of the case”.

It said that Malaysians in North Korea will be able to live normally under the same circumstances as they did before, despite Pyongyang’s temporary ban, reported by a news agency.

North Korea is seen as successfully taking the Malaysians hostage amongst deepening diplomatic stress between the North and Malaysia over the loss of life of Kim Jong-nam.

The move came after the Malaysian govt removed the North Korean ambassador on Monday following the killing of Kim Jong-un’s half-brother Kim Jong-Nam who was murdered on Feb 13 using the VX nerve agent at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport.

Malaysia also cancelled its visa-waiver program with North Korea last week and kicked out North Korean Ambassador to Malaysia Kang Chol in response to Northern Korea’s “diplomatically rude” comments.