SEOUL: North Korea‘s performing ambassador to Kuwait has defected to South Korea, the most recent in a current string of substantial-profile escapes from the isolated state, a South Korean lawmaker reported on Monday.
Ryu Hyun Woo had led North Korea’s embassy in Kuwait because previous Ambassador So Chang Sik was expelled following a 2017 UN resolution sought to scale back again the country’s abroad diplomatic missions.
Ryu defected to South Korea past September, according to Tae Yong Ho, who was North Korea’s deputy ambassador to Britain ahead of settling in the South in 2016 and staying elected as a lawmaker final 12 months.
Kuwait had been a vital source of international forex for Pyongyang, which despatched thousands of labourers there, largely for design initiatives.
Tae mentioned Ryu is also the son-in-law of Jon Il Chun, who as soon as oversaw a Worker’s Bash bureau dependable for controlling the ruling Kim spouse and children‘s mystery coffers, dubbed Area 39.
The Nationwide Intelligence Services declined to remark.
Ryu’s defection could be a indicator that the North Korean elite who shore up chief Kim Jong Un‘s power foundation has been drifting absent from him little by little but continuously, Tae claimed.
Ryu fled many months after Jo Tune Gil, who was North Korea’s performing ambassador to Italy, vanished with his spouse from the embassy and resurfaced in South Korea.
Tae instructed Reuters that the awareness and experiences of the outdoors entire world gained as a diplomat experienced fostered disillusionment among his relatives, and he determined to escape to “give liberty” to his little ones, calling for other officers to follow accommodate.
“I want to supply to my colleagues functioning all around the globe and North Korean elites that there is an alternative to North Korea, and the door is open up,” Tae explained in an job interview at the latest Reuters Following conference.