Hyon Song-wol, a singer, rumoured to be a former lover of the North Korean leader, is said to have been arrested on Aug 17 with 11 others for violating laws against pornography.
The reports in South Korea’s Chosun Ilbo newspaper indicate that Hyon, a singer with the Unhasu Orchestra, was among those arrested on August 17 for violating domestic laws on pornography.
All 12 were machine-gunned three days later, with other members of North Korea’s most famous pop groups and their immediate families forced to watch. The onlookers were then sent to prison camps, victims of the regime’s assumption of guilt by association, the reports stated.
“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,” said a Chinese source reported in the newspaper.
Hyon’s band was responsible for a string of patriotic hits in North Korea, including “Footsteps of Soldiers,” “I Love Pyongyang,” “She is a Discharged Soldier” and “We are Troops of the Party.” Her popularity reportedly peaked in 2005 with the song “Excellent Horse-Like Lady.”
The 12 who were executed were singers, musicians or dancers with the Hyon’s band,, the Unhasu Orchestra or the Wanghaesan Light Music Band and were accused of making videos of themselves performing sex acts and then selling the recordings.
The reports stated that both groups have been disbanded as a result of the scandal.
Some of the musicians were also found to have bibles when they were detained and all were treated as political dissidents.