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Russian airline suspends sales of transfer tickets to Pyongyang

2017/03/22 11:20

SEOUL, March 22 (Yonhap) -- Russian airline Aeroflot has suspended the sale of transfer tickets to enter Pyongyang due apparently to illegal activities by North Korea's state-run airline, including an employee allegedly being involved in the death of Kim Jong-nam, a U.S. broadcaster reported Wednesday.

The transfer tickets are a joint product between the two airlines.

Many passengers in Russia have so far shuttled to Pyongyang by way of Vladivostok or Beijing by using Aeroflot transfer tickets as it has been difficult to purchase Air Koryo tickets there.

"Air Koryo has also stopped selling the transfer tickets," Radio Free Asia said, citing Russian news media.

Other airlines are expected to take similar steps against Air Koryo, the broadcaster said, adding, "Air Koryo is likely to be gradually kicked out of the international aviation community."

   Controversy over Air Koryo's involvement in various illegal activities, such as the apparent assassination of leader Kim Jong-un's half brother, has never ceased, the broadcaster said.

Air Koryo currently provides services on the Pyongyang-Beijing, Pyongyang-Shanghai, Pyongyang-Shenyang and Pyongyang-Vladivostok routes.

Khalid Abu Bakar (C), head of the Royal Malaysian Police, said during a news conference in Kuala Lumpur on Feb. 22, 2017, that an Air Koryo employee has been linked to the assassination of Kim Jong-nam. (Yonhap) Khalid Abu Bakar (C), head of the Royal Malaysian Police, said during a news conference in Kuala Lumpur on Feb. 22, 2017, that an Air Koryo employee has been linked to the assassination of Kim Jong-nam. (Yonhap)

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