Current Event Cat of the Day: A North Korea Purge

Kim Jong Purge

North Korea has officially confirmed the purge of Kim Jong-un’s influential uncle and mentor. Off to the gulags!

The removal of Jang Song-thaek, uncle of leader Kim Jong-un, is the biggest shake-up to hit Pyongyang since the death of leader Kim Jong-il in December 2011.

Kim Jong-un has purged hundreds of officials during his short time in power, but never of this magnitude. Jang Song-thaek was long considered the country’s number 2 power player, but apparently the power went to his head – or became too threatening to Kim Jong-un.

After a week of speculation, on Monday North Korea officially acknowledged the purge of Uncle Jang for alleged corruption, drug use, squandering money at casinos, womanizing and other “anti-state” acts.

“Mr. Jang seriously obstructed the nation’s economic affairs and the improvement of the standard of people’s living,” North Korea’s statement said.

Affected by the capitalist way of living, Jang committed irregularities and corruption and led a dissolute and depraved life.”

I guess his 2004 “re-education” didn’t quite sink in…

The confirmation that Pyongyang had “eliminated Jang and purged his group,” came just one month after two of his aides were executed for corruption. The amount of detail in the purge announcement and images broadcast on North Korean state TV of Jang being dragged away appear to be a warning to North Koreans against dissent.

South Korea appears less than pleased about the recent purge.

“North Korea is currently carrying out a reign of terror, undertaking a large-scale purge in order to strengthen Kim Jong-un’s power,” South Korean President Park Geun-hye said during a cabinet meeting.

“From now on, South-North Korea relations may become more unstable.”

More unstable?

Via: The National Post

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