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PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) — The execution of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's uncle brought a swift and violent end to a man long considered the country's second-most powerful. But while Jang Song Thaek is now gone, the fallout from his bloody purge is not over.
North Korea said Friday it has executed the uncle of leader Kim Jong-Un, branding veteran fixer Jang Song-Thaek a "traitor for all ages", as the US and South Korea voiced concern at the shock purge. In a stunning downfall, Jang -- who had been seen as Kim's political regent and the country's unofficial number two -- was executed on Thursday immediately after a special military trial, state news agency KCNA. Jang, 67, played a key role in cementing the leadership of the inexperienced Kim when he succeeded his father Kim Jong-Il in 2011, but analysts said his power and influence had become increasingly resented. "If confirmed, this is another example of the extreme brutality of the North Korean regime," US State Department deputy spokeswoman Marie Harf said, adding that Washington was following developments closely.