Kim Jong-un has executed his envoy to the U.S. for ‘betraying the supreme leader’ as part of ruthless purge of officials after the dictator’s failed summit with Donald Trump, it has been claimed.
Kim Hyok Chol is said to have been shot by a firing squad in March at Mirim Airport for being ‘won over to the US,’ during nuclear negotiations with Trump.
The top diplomat, who accompanied Kim on his private train ahead of the summit in Vietnam, was one of four senior foreign ministry officials executed at the airfield, a source told South Korean newspaper Chosun Ilbo.
The other officials were not named, but all allegedly became U.S. ‘spies’ after the failed second negotiations between Trump and Kim Jong-un ended abruptly in February.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said this morning that Washington was checking the reports.
According to the reports, another senior official, Kim Yong Chol, who had been in nuclear discussions with Pompeo, was sent to a forced labour camp for ideological re-education.
Kim Song Hye, a woman who worked with Hyok Chol in talks with Pompeo was reportedly sent to another prison camp. The paper also said Kim Jong Un’s interpreter Shin Hye Yong was sent to a prison camp for a mistake at the summit.
She failed to translate Kim’s new proposal when Trump declared ‘no deal’ and walked away from the table, Chosun reported, citing another unnamed diplomatic source.
Shin was charged with making critical interpretation mistakes that included missing an unspecified ‘last-minute offer’ the North Korean leader supposedly made as Trump was about to walk out, Chosun reported.