Kim's 'executed' girlfriend makes TV comeback

Last updated 14:50 18/05/2014
Fairfax NZ

The former girlfriend of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un who was reportedly executed in August has appeared on state television.

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Kim Jong Un's ex-girlfriend has appeared on state television in North Korea.

Ordinarily that wouldn't make global headlines, only that everyone thought Hyon Song Wol had been executed nine months ago.

Agence France-Presse reported the second coming after Hyon - seemingly alive and well - was shown making a speech at a rally in Pyongyang, on Friday.

Showing devotion to the man who everyone thought had offed her, Hyon pledged to "stoke up the flame for art and creative work" in the poverty-stricken country and praised her ex's leadership.

Rumours of her execution - by firing squad - came about in August.

It was alleged Hyon, a singer in North Korea's famed Unhasu Orchestra, was one of 12 members of the orchestra and Wangjaesan Light Music Band who had filmed themselves having sex and then distributed the tapes.

Reports at the time indicated some of the group may have also been in possession of bibles - a political crime in the communist state.

South Korea's spy chief also gave the reports credence by saying he was "aware" of the alleged execution, AFP reported.

Although little was ever confirmed, it is thought Kim and Hyon met about 10 years ago but Kim's father, the late Kim Jong Il, disapproved of the relationship and ordered it to end.

Hyon ended up marrying a soldier and Kim married another singer, Ri Sol Ju, also a member of the orchestra.

Rumours of a continued secret relationship between Hyon and Kim surfaced, followed by more rumours that Kim's wife demanded his former lover be executed.

Kim has shown he isn't afraid of killing off people who were near and dear to him.

In an unusually detailed announcement, the official news agency KCNA announced in December that Kim's uncle, Jang Song Thaek had been tried for "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".

It called him a "traitor to the nation for all ages" and "worse than a dog", and then issued photos of Jang being led away to his death.

The stunning announcement came only days after Jang - long considered the country's No. 2 power - was removed from all his posts because of a long list of allegations, including corruption, drug use, gambling and womanising.

For a short time there was speculation Jang had been fed alive to hungry dogs, but that was quickly put to rest.

The leader's purge continued and in January Yonhap News Agency announced Jang's direct relatives, including children, had been executed.

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