Authorization

North Korean state security minister fired over corruption, cruelty

North Korean state security minister fired over corruption, crueltyNorth Korea fired its state security minister last month, presumably over corruption, abuse of power and torture committed by his agency, according to rival South Korea's government, Associated Press reports.

Jeong Joon Hee, a spokesman for the Unification Ministry, said the sacking of Kim Won Hong, who had been seen as close to leader Kim Jong Un, might cause instability in the country's leadership by causing more fear into the ruling elite. North Korea has not said anything about Kim Wong Hong, and Jeong did not say how the South's government obtained the information.

There's a possibility that Kim Won Hong will face stronger punishment as the investigation into his actions is ongoing, said Jeong.

South Korea has a spotty record of tracking developments in North Korea as information about the secretive, authoritarian state is often impossible to confirm.

Since taking power in late 2011, Kim Jong Un has executed or purged a slew of high-level government officials in what the South Korean government has described as a "reign of terror."
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