March 9, 2017 / 8:20 AM / 3 years ago

Malaysian PM says won't cut ties with North Korea

Malaysia's Prime Minister Najib Razak attends an event in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia March 8, 2017. REUTERS/Alexandra Radu

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) - Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razak said on Thursday that ties with North Korea will not be cut, after tensions over an investigation into the murder of the estranged half-brother of the North’s leader in Kuala Lumpur led to tit-for-tat travel bans.

“Diplomatic relations between Malaysia and North Korea will not be severed, as we need to continue communicating with them to find a solution,” Najib said on Thursday in a statement on his blog.

Najib said Malaysia will not relent from a firm approach toward North Korea, while adding that all Malaysians still in North Korea were safe. Two Malaysian U.N. employees were allowed to leave North Korea on Thursday, while nine others are stranded at the embassy in Pyongyang.

Reporting by Praveen Menon

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