Kim Jong-un has had North Korea’s vice-premier executed for displaying discontent with the supreme leader’s rule, according to a South Korean media outlet.
Choe Yong Gon, a 63-year-old former delegate for North-South cooperation, was allegedly shot by firing squad having not been seen in public for around eight months.
The reason for Choe’s death penalty is believed to be over poor work performance and his disapproval of Kim’s forestry policy.
Choe was only appointed as vice-premier last year and joins a growing list of those purged by Kim since he took power in 2011.
It was reported in May that the secretive state had also condemned defence chief Hyon Yong Chol to death, and used an anti-aircraft gun to carry out the deed.
The reports are as yet unconfirmed by South Korea’s National Intelligence Service, but if true the story only heightens growing concerns surrounding North Korea.
Hostilities in the region remain high, with numerous prominent missile tests sanctioned by Kim’s administration in 2015, coinciding with the 70th anniversary of his Worker’s Party being founded on October 10.