Kim Jong Un executes officials after failed Trump summit: report

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published 2 weeks ago - Duration: 01:43s

Kim Jong Un executes officials after failed Trump summit: report

North Korea executes its special envoy to the U.S. as well as foreign ministry officials involved with talks between Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump in February.

A South Korean newspaper had the report, saying the officials were held responsible for the summit's collapse.

Eve Johnson reports.

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Kim Jong Un executes officials after failed Trump summit: report

In North Korea, failure can have deadly consequences.

A South Korean newspaper reported Friday (May 31) that Pyonyang recently executed officials who helped set up the second summit between Leader Kim Jong Un and U.S. President Donald Trump.

They included Kim Hyok Chol, a special envoy to the U.S., as well as four foreign ministry officials.

They were reportedly investigated and executed at an airport in March charged with spying for the U.S. According to the Chosun Ilbo, North Korea held them responsible for the collapse of talks in Vietnam this past February.

Another official paying the price for failure: Kim Yong Chol, the country's top nuclear envoy who met with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in the run-up to the summit.

According to the report, Kim has been sentenced to forced labor and so-called ideological education.

Kim Jong Un's interpreter at the Hanoi meeting is also in trouble.

She reportedly made a translation mistake and is now locked up in a political prison camp for undermining the North Korean leader's authority.

There may be other victims, as well.

The newspaper says Kim Jong Un is rolling out a massive purge in a bid to divert attention away from problems at home.

North Korean state media seemed to make reference to the purge in a recent newspaper commentary which blasted "traitors and turncoats who only memorize words of loyalty toward the Leader and change according to the trend of the time." Meanwhile, at least one key official is keeping a low profile.

Kim Yo Jong is a close confidant of the North Korean leader.

She is also his sister.

According to the Chosun report, she's now lying low at his request.

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