Italy: North Korean envoy didn’t ask for asylum

ROME (AP) — The Italian Foreign Ministry says the envoy who had been North Korea’s acting ambassador in Rome has not asked Italian authorities for asylum.

South Korea’s spy agency told lawmakers in Seoul on Thursday that North Korean diplomat Jo Song Gil went into hiding with his wife in November before his term in Italy ended. His whereabouts are not publicly known now.

Italy on Thursday noted that it had been notified in the past that Jo’s spell as a diplomat in Italy had ended and thus he no longer held any diplomatic position in Italy.

It wasn’t immediately clear if the diplomat might have sought asylum from another country’s embassy or consulate in Italy.

Ministry officials spoke to The Associated Press under their customary rules of anonymity on delicate matters.