North Korea has executed its vice premier for education and rebuked two high-ranking officials, South Korea said on Wednesday, which, if true, would mark a new series of measures by leader Kim Jong Un to discipline top aides.
Kim took power in 2011 after the death of his father, Kim Jong Il, and his consolidation of power has included purges and executions of top officials, South Korean officials have said.
South Korea’s Unification Ministry spokesman Jeong Joon-hee said the government had confirmed the execution of the education official, Kim Yong Jin, “through various channels” but declined to provide details.
Kim Yong Chol, the influential head of the North’s United Front Department which handles inter-Korean relations, was made to undergo “revolutionary measures,” Jeong told a briefing.
Another ruling party official in the propaganda department was also reprimanded, Jeong said.