North Korea accuses Central Intelligence Agency of plot to kill leader Kim Jong

The ministry said the spy agencies in June 2014 "ideologically corrupted and bribed" a North Korean citizen who had been working in Russian Federation to carry out the alleged assassination on Kim after returning home. KCNA has a track record of allegations of plots to assassinate North Korea's leadership, none of which have been verified.

The statement, carried by North Korea's official news agency and read on state TV, didn't describe how the alleged plot was broken up or give the full name of the North Korean suspect, identifying him only by his surname, Kim, and didn't say whether anyone else was in custody.

The Ministry of State Security claimed a terrorist group backed by the CIA and South Korea's intelligence agency had entered the country.

"They hatched a plot of letting human scum Kim commit bomb terrorism targeting the supreme leadership during events at the Kumsusan Palace of the Sun and at military parade and public procession after his return home", KCNA said.

"A ugly terrorists' group, which the Central Intelligence Agency and the IS infiltrated into the DPRK on the basis of covert and meticulous preparations to commit state-sponsored terrorism against the supreme leadership of the DPRK by use of bio-chemical substance, has been recently detected".

South Korea's intelligence service told CNN they know nothing about the alleged plot.

In retaliation for the alleged assassination attempt, North Korea will commence a "Korean-style anti terrorist sweep away the intelligence and plot-breeding organizations of the USA imperialists and the puppet clique", the statement continued.

A war of words between the West and nuclear-armed North Korea has escalated in recent weeks, with Pyongyang threatening to carry out a sixth nuclear test.

North Korea vowed to "mercilessly destroy" the terrorists behind the plan - which is oddly reminiscent of the 2014 comedy "The Interview", in which a reporter tries to covertly poison Kim Jong Un with a biochemical substance.

Tillerson said the Trump administration had been "leaning hard into China ... to test their willingness to use their influence, their engagement with the regime".

KCNA said Kim viewed Yeonpyeong from an observation post on Jangje Islet, before calling for combat readiness from North Korea.

The accusation comes just months after the assassination of half-brother Kim Jong Nam via VX nerve agent in Kuala Lumpur.

  • Leroy Wright