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North Korean Defectors Apologize For Embarrassingly Wrong Kim Jong Un “Death” Info

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Some prominent North Korean defectors and dissidents are in the hot seat after giving embarrassingly wrong information just days before Kim Jong Un's much-awaited public appearance last Friday after an uncharacteristic 3-week absence which had unleashed a torrent of rumors and reports of this death or that he was in a vegetative state after supposedly undergoing heart surgery. 

One former North Korean dissident and diplomat apologized for loudly claiming that North Korea’s Kim was so ill that he couldn't even stand up, awkwardly issued shortly ahead of the leader contradicting such claims in appearing publicly at a Sunchon Phosphatic Fertilizer Factory on Saturday, attended by hundreds of officials.


He's alive! Image via AP

The Guardian reports that "High-profile defectors from the country speculated that Kim was suffering from a grave illness or could even be dead."

Notably among these is Thae Yong-ho, former deputy ambassador to Britain and one of two defectors elected to the South Korean parliament last month. He was forced to issue a public apology on Monday, saying "I am aware that one of the reasons why many of you voted for me as a lawmaker is with the expectations of an accurate analysis and projections on North Korean issues," in a statement. "I feel the blame and heavy responsibility."

"Whatever the reasons, I apologize to everyone," he added.

And another prominent North Korean dissident who was so far off base that he's since had to fast publicly back-track is Ji Seung-ho, also recently elected to the South's parliament, who previously said in a media interview he's 99% sure that Kim died after cardiovascular surgery.


Thae Yong-ho and Ji Seong-ho, defectors from North Korea who were recently elected into South Korea’s National Assembly, were key sources of information for false media reports claiming Kim Jong Un's death, via Yonhap News.

Ji Seung-ho had even said Pyongyang was preparing to make the major announcement to the world of Kim's "death" on Saturday — instead the world finally saw Kim in the flesh, ashy and bloated though it was. 

“I have pondered on myself for the past few days, and felt the weight of the position that I’m in,” Ji said in a statement. “As a public figure, I will behave carefully going forward.“

Ji had told Reuters on Friday he had received information about Kim’s death from a source he could not disclose.

The false predictions from what's essentially the leadership of a 'political opposition in exile' community in South Korea set off a firestorm of criticism in Seoul.

The ruling Democratic Party of South Korea issued a statement condemning the prominent dissidents and newly elected lawmakers' words, saying the “repercussions could have been more serious than merely misleading the public.”

And one of the party’s members went so far as to demand their removal from the Intelligence and Defense committees in Parliament.


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