North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's powerful uncle was stripped naked, thrown into a cage, and eaten alive by a pack of ravenous dogs, according to a newspaper with close ties to China's ruling Communist Party.
The report could not be independently confirmed by NBC News on Friday.
The man who was believed to be in charge of training his young nephew to take over was executed as a traitor, indicating a shake-up in Kim Jong Un's regime. NBC's Andrea Mitchell reports.
Jang Song Thaek, who had been considered Kim's second-in-command, was executed last month after being found guilty of "attempting to overthrow the state," North Korea’s state-run news agency reported.
The official North Korean account on Dec. 12 did not specify how Jang was put to death.
Hong Kong-based pro-Beijing newspaper Wen Wei Po reported that Jang and his five closest aides were set upon by 120 hunting hounds which had been starved for five days.
Kim and his brother Kim Jong Chol supervised the one-hour ordeal along with 300 other officials, according to Wen Wei Po. The newspaper added that Jang and other aides were "completely eaten up."
The newspaper has acted as a mouthpiece for China's Communist Party. The report may be a sign of the struggle between those in the party who want to remain engaged with North Korea and those who would like to distance themselves from Kim's regime.