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North Korean official in charge of ties with South dies

AFP file photo | North Korea's Kim Yang-Gon gets into a vehicle as he leaves a hotel in Incheon on October 4, 2014.

A top North Korean official in charge of ties with South Korea and reunification has been killed in a traffic accident, Pyongyang’s state media said on Wednesday.

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“Comrade Kim Yang-Gon, a Workers’ Party secretary and member of the party Central Committee Politbureau... died in a traffic accident at 6:15 am Tuesday at age 73,” the North’s Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said.

KCNA said leader Kim Jong-Un would head an 80-member state funeral for Kim on Thursday.

A career party diplomat, Kim has been known as a key confidante to the leader in the Stalinist state, advising him on inter-Korean relations and more recently on international relations in general.

He played a leading role in realising the 2007 summit between the then leader Kim Jong-Il and South Korean president Roh Moo-Hyun.

(AFP)

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