Kim regime continuing its purge, official states

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Kim regime continuing its purge, official states

North Korea has continued its purge of a group of close aides to Jang Song-thaek - the uncle of the reclusive state’s young leader Kim Jong-un - who was executed on Dec. 12, South Korea’s unification minister said yesterday.

Ryoo Kihl-jae, the Park Geun-hye government’s minister of unification, acknowledged yesterday at a hearing for lawmakers on the National Assembly’s Intelligence Committee that North Korea appears to have continued its ouster of officials who were close confidantes of Jang, the second-most powerful man in the regime who reportedly had a wide network across the country.

“We have detected some occasions in which those who were deeply involved with Jang Song-thaek have been called in for questioning and purged,” Ryoo said, when asked if there had been any more executions in the aftermath of Jang’s demise.

Without disclosing the identities of those listed in the additional purges, the minister said that the dismissals “are not that large in volume,” implying that only a small group of Jang’s aides had been involved.

BY KIM HEE-JIN [heejin@joongang.co.kr]

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