Asia

Malaysia says Kim Jong Nam's body still in the country

  • A medical worker pushes a trolley outside forensic department at Kuala Lumpur Hospital in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Tuesday, March 28, 2017. Kim Jong Nam, the half brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, died after two women smeared his face with the banned VX nerve agent at Kuala Lumpur's airport on Feb. 13, 2017, according to Malaysian authorities. Relations between Malaysia and North Korea have deteriorated sharply since Kim's death. (AP Photo/Daniel Chan)

    A medical worker pushes a trolley outside forensic department at Kuala Lumpur Hospital in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Tuesday, March 28, 2017. Kim Jong Nam, the half brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, died after two women smeared his face with the banned VX nerve agent at Kuala Lumpur's airport on Feb. 13, 2017, according to Malaysian authorities. Relations between Malaysia and North Korea have deteriorated sharply since Kim's death. (AP Photo/Daniel Chan)  (The Associated Press)

  • Malaysian police officers guard outside the forensic department at Kuala Lumpur Hospital in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Tuesday, March 28, 2017. Kim Jong Nam, the half brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, died after two women smeared his face with the banned VX nerve agent at Kuala Lumpur's airport on Feb. 13, 2017, according to Malaysian authorities. Relations between Malaysia and North Korea have deteriorated sharply since Kim's death. (AP Photo/Daniel Chan)

    Malaysian police officers guard outside the forensic department at Kuala Lumpur Hospital in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Tuesday, March 28, 2017. Kim Jong Nam, the half brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, died after two women smeared his face with the banned VX nerve agent at Kuala Lumpur's airport on Feb. 13, 2017, according to Malaysian authorities. Relations between Malaysia and North Korea have deteriorated sharply since Kim's death. (AP Photo/Daniel Chan)  (The Associated Press)

  • A man walks near the North Korean Embassy in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Tuesday, March 28, 2017. Kim Jong Nam, the half brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, died after two women smeared his face with the banned VX nerve agent at Kuala Lumpur's airport on Feb. 13, 2017, according to Malaysian authorities. Relations between Malaysia and North Korea have deteriorated sharply since Kim's death. (AP Photo/Daniel Chan)

    A man walks near the North Korean Embassy in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Tuesday, March 28, 2017. Kim Jong Nam, the half brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, died after two women smeared his face with the banned VX nerve agent at Kuala Lumpur's airport on Feb. 13, 2017, according to Malaysian authorities. Relations between Malaysia and North Korea have deteriorated sharply since Kim's death. (AP Photo/Daniel Chan)  (The Associated Press)

Malaysia's health minister says the body of the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is still in the country, dismissing reports that the remains of Kim Jong Nam were about to be flown out of the country as part of diplomatic negotiations.

Conflicting reports in local media on Monday said either that Kim's body was to be cremated and flown to Pyongyang, or that the body was about to be sent to Macau where his family is believed to be.

Health Minister Subramaniam Sathasivam said Tuesday that the body was still in a Kuala Lumpur morgue pending negotiations with North Korea.

Kim's death has sparked a diplomatic dispute, with the countries imposing exit bans on each other's citizens.