Are North Korean Assassins Wielding Poison Needles?

Reports surface of activists supposedly getting pricked

By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff

Posted Sep 26, 2011 1:28 PM CDT
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(Newser) – As Goldfinger told James Bond, "Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Three times is enemy's action." Three odd incidents in South Korea are being blamed on North Korea—and its poison needle-wielding assassins, reports the Los Angeles Times. In recent weeks, a South Korean pastor who helped North Koreans escape to China died after collapsing in the street, his face and fingers discolored; another South Korean survived after collapsing the next day, and reported that he felt a prick in his lower back.

It might have just been a coincidence, except that South Korean intelligence said it foiled a plot to attack an activist who sent balloons bearing anti-Kim Jong Il leaflets into North Korea—using a poison needle. The head of a Seoul-based group that reports on North Korea thinks youngest son Kim Jong Un is behind the attacks, saying he "doesn't fear international censure. He is only thinking about increasing his power within the system." But Seoul officials say that the dead pastor's initial autopsy revealed no indication that he was poisoned.

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