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Jang Song Thaek May Have Been Shot By Machine Gun, South Korean Lawmaker Says

The head of South Korea's National Assembly Intelligence Committee, Seo Sang-kee, says Jang Song Thaek, uncle of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, is believed to have been executed by machine gun. (WOOHAE CHO/AFP/Getty Images) 2013-12-13 05:33 AM EST Last Updated: 2013-12-13 08:07 PM EST
The head of the National Assembly's Intelligence Committee, Seo Sang-kee, said North Korea is believed to have used a machine gun in executing Jang Song Thaek.

North Korea said on Friday (December 13) Jang Song Thaek, the uncle of leader Kim Jong Un and previously considered the second most powerful man in the secretive state, has been executed after a special military tribunal found him guilty of treason.

"The National Intelligence Service (NIS) confirmed that two of Jang's aides had been executed with a machine gun. It hasn't been confirmed yet but this execution is presumed to have taken place in the same way," Seo at a news briefing in Seoul.

The lawmaker added that Kim Jong Un handled the execution very quickly to ease political tensions between his supporters and Jang's.

"His swift execution shows that Kim Jong Un's hold on power is weaker than Kim Jong Il's. It is obvious that Kim Jong Un wanted to stop the political tensions from spreading," Seo said.

North Korean state media KCNA said that Jang "had a dirty political ambition".

The execution caps a spectacular downfall of the husband of leader Kim's aunt. Jang had previously suffered purges but fought his way back to the power circle to hold influential positions in the ruling party and the military.

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