CHENNAI: Malaysia has not severed ties with North Korea despite the row over Kim-Jong Nam's murder and detention of Malaysian citizens there.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said ties remain intact – as long as the Vienna Convention on diplomatic ties is observed.
On the release of the Malaysians, Najib said the North Koreans met the two objectives he had set during negotiations for their freedom.
"I had insisted that the nine Malaysians would be allowed to leave North Korea safely.
"Secondly, (Malaysia’s) sovereignty should not be compromised.
"(The North Koreans) met both objectives," he said.
Najib said he is glad the Malaysians were released safely.
"We managed to secure their release despite North Korea making difficult demands," he said.
Najib had personally spoken to the nine Malaysians stranded in North Korea to assure them that they would leave the socialist country safely.
"They were in high spirits," he said.
Asked if the men suspected of involvement in the killing of Jong-nam had left the country, Najib said: "I believe they have”.