By Staff Writer Published 12/12/2013 22:17:00 | Views: 1739
This undated image grab taken from footage shown by North Korea's KCTV and released by South Korea's Yonhap news agency on December 9, 2013, shows Jang Song-Thaek (C) reportedly being dragged out from his chair by two police officials during a m

NORTH Korean dictator Kim Jong-Un has had his uncle executed after declaring former second-most powerful man in his regime "worse than a dog".

In a move which commentators suggests indicates a behind-the-scenes power struggle, the move follows the execution of two of his uncle's 'close confidantes' late last month.

North Korean news agency KCNA announced the execution of "traitor Jang Song-Thaek" in a statement early this morning.

"The service personnel and people throughout the country broke into angry shouts that a stern judgment of the revolution should be meted out to the anti-party, counter-revolutionary factional elements," the statement reads.

It states Jong Un's uncle "committed such hideous crime as attempting to overthrow the state by all sorts of intrigues and despicable methods with a wild ambition to grab the supreme power of our party and state"

The North Korean state media later went so far as to call the leader's former mentor "despicable human scum, worse than a dog.'

Jang Song-Thaek had been removed from all posts, including vice chairman of the communist country's top military body, the National Defence Commission, earlier this month.

He was accused of corruption, drug use, gambling, womanizing and generally leading a "dissolute and depraved life.''

Two of his close confidantes - Ri Yong-Ha and Jang Soo-Kil - were publicly executed in mid-November".

The husband of Kim Jong-Il's powerful sister, Kim Kyong-Hui, Jang was seen as instrumental in cementing Kim Jong-Un's hold on power in the tricky transition period after his father's death.

He was often referred to as the unofficial number two in the hierarchy and the real power behind the throne of Kim, who is aged around 30.

Jang Song-Thaek has fallen out of favour before. In 2004 he was understood to have undergone "re-education" as a steel mill labourer because of suspected corruption, but he made a comeback the following year.

His wife Kim Kyong-Hui has also long been at the centre of power. She was promoted to four-star general at the same time as Kim Jong-Un in 2010, a sign of her key role in the family's efforts to maintain its six-decade grip on power.

By Staff Writer 12/12/2013 22:17:00

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