North Korea accuses US of elaborate plot to kill Kim Jong Un | Asia| An in-depth look at news from across the continent | DW | 05.05.2017
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North Korea accuses US of elaborate plot to kill Kim Jong Un

North Korea has published accusations against the US and South Korea saying they bribed a North Korean to "hurt the supreme leadership." Pyongyang provided no evidence beyond promising that it was an "elaborate" plan.

In a long report by Pyongyang's state-run Korean Central News Agency, the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) was accused on Friday of trying to use biochemical substances to kill North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

North Korea's Ministry of State Security claimed agents paid an overseas North Korean laborer in the eastern Russia to detonate a bomb with "radioactive" and "nano poisonous" substances when he attended a military parade in Pyongyang. A major military parade showing off weapons and troops was held in Pyongyang last month.

Nordkorea Flagge (picture alliance/AP Photo/W. Maye-E)

The April parade in Pyongyang celebrated the 105th anniversary of Kim Il Sung, the country's late founder

The agents "ideologically corrupted and bribed a DPRK citizen surnamed Kim" to carry out the attack the statement said, using the initials for North Korea's formal name. There was no news of how Kim smuggled the device back into North Korea or what had become of him.

Calling the US and South Korean intelligence services a "hotbed of evils in the world," the report accused the agencies of having "hatched a vicious plot to hurt the supreme leadership of the DPRK."

Delayed effect

While the Pyongyang regime often makes accusations against its southern neighbors and the US without offering evidenced to support its claims, the accusations were unusual in their length and the extent of detail offered.

North Korea's Ministry of State Security claimed the substances employed in the alleged attack could be used remotely and with a delayed effect.

"Assassination by use of biochemical substances including radioactive substance and nano poisonous substance is the best method that does not require access to the target, their lethal results will appear after six or 12 months," the Ministry claimed.

The plot was tantamount to "the declaration of a war," the statement added and it accused the US of sponsoring terrorism.

On Thursday, the US House of Representatives voted 419 to 1 to tighten sanctions on North Korea by targeting its shipping industry and companies that do business with the reclusive state. Supporters of the bill, which has to gain Senate approval before President Donald Trump can sign it into law, said the measure mirrored concern about North Korea's escalation of its nuclear program.

Mutmaßlich Kim Jong Nam, Bruder von Nordkoreas Diktator Kim Jong Un (picture alliance/AP Photo/S. Kambayashi/W. Maye)

File photos of the late Kim Jong Nam, elder half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un

Malaysia airport killing

The accusations from Pyongyang come as the US administration considers listing North Korea as a state sponsor of terrorism following the apparent assassination of the North Korean leader's estranged brother Kim Jong Nam at an international airport in Malaysia in February.

The United States kept North Korea on its terrorism blacklist for more than 20 years following the deadly bombing of a South Korean airliner in 1987. President George W. Bush lifted the designation in 2008 ahead of talks proposing aid in exchange for disarmament.

There are heavy international  sanctions in force against North Korea because of its nuclear program and ballistic missile tests. The UN Security Council has passed a number of resolutions since North Korea's first nuclear test in 2006, blocking military supplies and restricting trade and finance.

The US also restricts foreign aid, defense sales and exports of sensitive technologies to Pyongyang.

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