Jang 'eaten alive by dogs'

The uncle of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un was devoured alive by starved dogs, according to a report published in Hong Kong.

The detailed account of Jang Song-thaek's execution was published in Wen Wei Po, a pro-Beijing newspaper based in Hong Kong, according to the Straits Times of Singapore.

Most political prisoners in North Korea are executed by firing squads with machine guns. However, Jang Song-thaek was stripped naked and thrown into a cage, along with his five closest aides, Wen Wei Po reported.

The 120 hounds, starved for three days, were allowed to prey on them until they were completely eaten up. This is called "quan jue", or execution by dogs.

The report said the entire process lasted for an hour, with Kim Jong-un, the supreme leader in North Korea, supervising it along with 300 senior officials.

The report of the purge last month of the man seen as the No. 2 power in North Korea vividly depicted the brutality of the country's young leader.

"The fact that it appeared in a Beijing-controlled newspaper showed that China no longer cares about its relations with the Kim regime," wrote a Straits Times correspondent.

The Global Times, associated with the People's Daily, a Chinese Communist Party organ, followed up with a sternly worded editorial saying that the abrupt political change epitomised the backwardness of the North Korean political system.

It warned the Chinese government not to coddle North Korea any longer, saying that the majority of Chinese were "extremely disgusted" with the Kim regime.

In purging a top official known for his close ties with Beijing in such a brutal manner, Pyongyang did not hide its antagonism toward China.

The official litany of Jang's treason implicated China three times. Jang was accused of underselling coal and other natural resources for which China was virtually the sole customer.

He was also charged with "selling off the land of Rason economic and trade zone to a foreign country for a period of five decades under the pretext of paying debts".

Finally, he was accused of selling precious metals, thus disrupting the country's financial stability. In fact, China purchased some of North Korea's gold reserves several months ago.

He was also accused of aiding Chinese businessmen in securing low prices for North Korean goods and commodities.

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