The government of North Korea has executed eighty people by firing squad said a report from South Korea about the highly secretive country. The eighty were executed for viewing foreign films.
A newspaper from South Korea, JoongAng Ilbo, reported the public executions were coordinated for effect and took place in seven different cities across the country at the beginning of November.
In one of the cases, local authorities detained more than 10,000 people of which some were children, and forced them to view the executions, said the newspaper report.
Those executed had been found guilty by the government of just minor misdemeanors, which included watching television programs from South Korea on videos or for having a Bible.
Sources for the South Korean paper said that witnesses viewed eight people who had been tied to stakes at the Shinpoong Stadium in the province of Kandwon. The eight had sacks put over each of their heads and were then executed by soldiers who used machine guns.
One source said the people in North Korea that saw the eight executed said afterwards that their bodies had been so riddled with bullets it was hard to recognize them.
Friends and relatives of each of the victims were sent, said sources, to different prison camps. This is a tactic of the government of North Korea to dissuade people from breaking their laws.
One analyst said that reports to the public about the executions would have a big effect on the rest of the population. He said survival was the only thing people they wanted and that breaking the law was something they could not dare do now.
The executions of dozens might be a signal of a wider crackdown on the possible hints of discontent within the population.
This latest report, said on think tank in Washington, claims Kim survived a 2012 assassination attempt and his personal security increased dramatically since the attempt took place.
That report echoes what sources from South Korea intelligence stated back in March that a small faction inside the army in North Korea were involved in the assassination attempt in November of 2012.