Seoul: North Korea has replaced the bodyguards of leader Kim Jong Un with ruling party officials, raising speculation that power in the North is shifting to the party away from the military, a Seoul daily reported on Thursday.
North Korea's Kim Jong-un. Agencies
The South Korean government "assumes that the replacements were made before (former leader) Kim Jong Il's death (in December)," the JoongAng Daily quoted a South Korean government official as saying.
The official, working in foreign affairs and national security, said that it could have relevance to North Korea's recent power transition from the military to the ruling party, under the rule of new leader Kim.
The official also added that North Korea is trying to protect the young leader against a possible military coup by replacing the military guards.