Hyon Song-Wol, the purported ex-girlfriend of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, was executed by a firing squad, it was reported.
Hyon was among 12 musicians and singers who were rounded up on Aug. 17 and executed by a firing squad in front of a crowd of family members who were forced to witness it. The family members were then sent to prison camps, reported the Chosun Ilbo newspaper.
A source in the isolated, communist country told the paper that some members had Bibles with them, and they were all described as political dissidents.
“They were executed with machine guns while the key members of the Unhasu Orchestra, Wangjaesan Light Band and Moranbong Band as well as the families of the victims looked on,” a source told the paper.
Hyon was a singer with the Unhasu Orchestra and sung a number of propaganda songs, including “Excellent Horse-Like Lady,” “I Love Pyongyang, and “She Is A Discharged Soldier.”
But she was accused of making and selling tapes with sexually explicit material on them. However, there have been reports suggesting the charge might have been fabricated for political purposes.
Around a decade ago, Kim and Hyon were in a relationship of which Kim’s father did not approve. They were eventually forced to call it off, but there were rumors that they continued to see each other, according to the Korea Joong Ang daily.
Kim’s wife, Ri Sol-Ju, was also a member of the Unhasu Orchestra
According to the Chosun Ilbo, a source said that “Kim Jong-un has been viciously eliminating anyone who he deems a challenge to his authority.”
Toshimitsu Shigemura, a professor at Tokyo’s Waseda University, told the Daily Telegraph that she was executed for “political reasons.”
“If these people had only made pornographic videos, then it is simply not believable that their punishment was execution,” he said. “Or, as Kim’s wife once belonged to the same group, it is possible that these executions are more about Kim’s wife,” he added.