Malaysia declares North Korea Ambassador “persona non grata”

Three weeks after the murder of the estranged half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, Malaysia has asked the North Korean ambassador to leave the country within 48 hours. The diplomatic blow to Ambassador Kang Chol came from the Malaysian foreign ministry, after he failed to provide an apology over his comments regarding Malaysian authorities’ murder investigation of Kim Jong-nam.

Kim Jong-nam was murdered by North Korean agents with a toxic nerve agent at Kuala Lumpur’s airport and Kang Chol had commented that Malaysia’s investigation could not be trusted. He said Malaysia was “colluding with outside forces” in an obscure reference to South Korea. US and South Korean officials have said Kim Jong-nam was killed by North Korean agents with the deadly VX, a nerve agent classed as a weapon of mass destruction.

According to the Indian Express, a statement from the Malaysian foreign ministry read, “The expulsion of the DPRK (North Korea) Ambassador is… an indication of the government’s concern that Malaysia may have been used for illegal activities”. Malaysia’s Foreign Minister Anifah Haji Aman said “Malaysia will react strongly against any insults made against it or any attempt to tarnish its reputation”.

Pyongyang refuses to acknowledge the dead man’s identity and claims that Malaysia is hand in glove with its enemies, even when two suspects – Indonesian woman Siti Aisyah and Vietnamese woman Doan Thi Huong remain in Malaysian police custody. Malaysia, in response, has imposed visa travel for North Koreans, effective March 6, 2017, in a complete departure from the visa-free travel enjoyed earlier.

Sources: 1] Free Malaysia Today

MEA Confirms 13 Indian nationals test positive for Zika

On Thursday, the Ministry of External Affairs confirmed thirteen Indian nationals to have tested positive for Zika Virus in Singapore.

This development comes amid Singapore’s announcement of its first locally contracted case of Zika earlier this week. Since then the number of cases have seen a steady growth.

Speaking of which, MEA spokesperson, Vikas Swarup said, “According to our mission in Singapore 13 Indian nationals have tested positive for Zika” as reported by Reuters.

Additionally, Malaysia on Thursday confirmed that the first case of Zika in the country was found in a woman who was on a trip Singapore for three days starting August 19.

Acknowledging this development, Malaysia’s health minister elaborated saying that the woman tested positive for Zika after a prolonged bout of fever and severe rashes upon her return from the South East Asian country.

According to a study by the US health officials, Zika virus in pregnant women causes a birth defect, known as microcephaly, identified by smaller head size that can be a pathway to several growth and developmental problems in babies.

Sources: Indian Express, Reuters

MEA Confirms 13 Indian nationals test positive for Zika in Singapore

On Thursday, the Ministry of External Affairs confirmed 13 Indian nationals to have tested positive for Zika Virus in Singapore.

This development comes amid Singapore’s announcement of its first locally contracted case of Zika earlier this week. Since then the number of cases have seen a steady growth.

Speaking of which, MEA spokesperson, Vikas Swarup said, “According to our mission in Singapore 13 Indian nationals have tested positive for Zika” as reported by Reuters.

In addition to this, Malaysia on Thursday confirmed that the first case of Zika in the country was found in a woman who was on a trip Singapore for three days starting August 19.

Acknowledging this development, Malaysia’s health minister elaborated saying that the woman tested positive for Zika after a prolonged bout fever and severe rashes on her return from the South East Asian country.

According to a study by the US health officials, Zika virus in pregnant women causes a birth defect, known as microcephaly, identified by smaller head size that can be a pathway to several growth and developmental problems in babies.

Read more at: Indian Express