- The Washington Times - Sunday, December 15, 2013

Secretary of State John F. Kerry says North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s execution of his uncle makes denuclearization even more of a priority for the United States.

“This is the nature of this ruthless, horrendous dictatorship and of his insecurities. And I think we need to factor that into the urgency of getting China, Russia, Japan, South Korea — all of us — to stay on the same page and to put as much effort into the denuclearization as possible,” Mr. Kerry said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week With George Stephanopoulos.” “To have a nuclear weapon, potentially, in the hands of somebody like Kim Jong-un just becomes even more unacceptable.”

Mr. Kerry said the killing of Mr. Kim’s uncle, a top figure in North Korea and mentor to the young leader, shows that the leader is spontaneous, erratic and insecure about his place in the power structure. The most recent of a “significant number” of executions over the past few months is reminiscent of former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, Mr. Kerry said.

“It really reminded me of a video that we saw of Saddam Hussein doing the same thing, having people plucked out of an audience and people sitting there sweating and nobody daring to move or do anything,” he said.

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