North defector to run for South Korean parliament

SEOUL (AP) — A high-profile North Korean defector said yesterday he’ll run in upcoming parliamentary elections in South Korea as part of his efforts to help South Koreans understand the true nature of North Korea and map out a better unification policy.

Thae Yong-ho, a former minister at the North Korean Embassy in London who came to Seoul with his family in 2016, is the most senior North Korean diplomat to defect to South Korea. Since his arrival, Thae has openly criticised North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s nuclear ambitions and expressed scepticism over Kim’s denuclearisation commitment made during now-stalled diplomacy with President Donald Trump.

Thae told reporters yesterday he decided to run in the April 15 elections on the ticket of the conservative opposition Liberty Korea Party.