The Corner

Kim Jong Un’s Powerful Uncle Ousted

Kim Jong Un’s uncle, Jang Song Thaek, has been removed from his position as vice chairman of North Korea’s top military body and, reportedly, executed. North Korea’s state news agency broadcast images on Sunday of the man being removed from a Communist-party meeting and being stripped of all his titles.

Jang was considered Kim’s mentor, a kind of regent figure after Kim Jong Il’s death, and one of the most powerful men in North Korea. His arrest and possible execution comes after the public execution in the past two weeks of two of his closest allies, Lee Yong Ha and Jang Soo Kee, and has been seen as an attempt by Kim to consolidate power.

He was accused of living an expensive, hedonistic lifestyle, selling the country’s resources at reduced prices, and “dreaming different dreams,” supposedly conspiring with a faction to challenge Kim’s leadership.

Jang’s likeness has since been erased from photographs and even removed from a North Korean state documentary.


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