31 top North Korean officials from Party and state agencies have been removed from their posts since Kim Jong Eun emerged publicly on September 28th, 2010, according to Saenuri Party lawmaker Yoon Sang Hyun.
Yoon, a member of the National Assembly Foreign Affairs, Trade and Unification Committee, made the claim in a press release yesterday, saying, “Kim Jong Eun has been using the pretext of corruption or negative attitude to remove those high-ranking officials who are either becoming obstacles to his seizure of power, whose results are poor or who have expressed their dissatisfaction.”
“But on those occasions when North Korea reported the causes of these removals to the outside world, they mostly just said it relates to illness,” he added.
According to Yoon, the list of removed officials includes four dismissed from the Party Central Military Commission in September, 2010, 13 removed in the course of 2011 and 14 removed in the ten months to October, 2012, with the most recent being Minister of Sport Park Myung Cheol, whose dismissal was confirmed indirectly through a Chosun Central News Agency report on October 17th.
“These are a kind of ‘model execution’ designed to guarantee the obedience and loyalty of high-ranking officials,” Yoon explained, predicting that the churning process is not yet complete, and that more changes are likely in the coming months.