"Obviously we have a very bad relationship with them, we're not pals, [but] to be able to exert influence on North Korea.is to encourage our friends in the region who I think are rightfully concerned with North Korea as well to step up".
The figure was an increase of 40 from a year ago, with some 1-1.8 million people estimated to be using the markets.
"As the investigation into the murder of Jong Nam may take a long time, the management chose to embalm the body to prevent rotting which could jeopardise the probe", the source said.
Malaysia has also refused demands by the North Korean government for Kim Jong-nam's body to be released, saying that the remains can only be handed over to the next-of-kin under local laws.
Despite that, some opine that the North Korean authorities are propagandizing the development of markets as Kim's achievements. He had been known to speak out publicly against his family's dynastic control of North Korea.
Therefore, Kim is virtually tolerating marketization, he added.
The estranged half-brother of North Korea's leader Kim Jong-Un was poisoned with the lethal nerve agent VX in a brazen Cold War-style killing on February 13 at Kuala Lumpur International Airport.
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The red notice alerts police in Interpol member countries to share any information on the suspects, with a view to potentially arresting and extraditing them to face justice.
Meanwhile, Malaysia's deputy police chief indicated Thursday that Kim's family had given its approval to Malaysian authorities to decide what to do with his embalmed remains, but the official did not make it clear whether the family wanted to take possession of the body.
In a separate development, Prime Minister Najib Razak said Malaysia has not started formal negotiations with North Korea over the release of nine Malaysians stranded in Pyongyang. Both reportedly believed they were participating in a television prank.
Pyongyang has denounced the Malaysian investigation as an attempt to smear the secretive regime, insisting that the 45-year-old most likely died of a heart attack.
There are now nine Malaysians in North Korea - three embassy staff members and their family members.
It said Malaysia police chief Khalid Abu Bakar confirmed the possibility that more suspects may be involved.