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North Korea executes vice premier for education: Seoul

North Korea

SEOUL: North Korea has put to death a vice premier and sent two other officials away for re-education, South Korea said Wednesday, following media reports of a high profile execution in the secretive state.

“Vice premier for education Kim Yong-Jin was executed,” Seoul’s unification ministry spokesman Jeong Joon-Hee told reporters at a regular press briefing.

Kim was killed by a firing squad in July as “an anti-party, anti-revolutionary agitator,” said an official at the ministry, who wished to remain anonymous.

The ministry said two other senior officials had to undergo re-education sessions. One of them was Kim Yong-Chol, a top official in charge of inter-Korean affairs.

Since taking power after his father’s death in late 2011, North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un is believed to have executed or demoted a number of senior officials in what analysts say is an attempt to tighten his grip on power.

The most notorious case was that of Kim’s uncle Jang Song-Thaek, who was executed for charges including treason and corruption in December 2013.

The mass-selling JoongAng Ilbo on Tuesday said two senior officials had been put to death.

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