Everyone thought this North Korean general had been executed. Then he got promoted.

General Ri Yong-gil
(Image credit: Twitter/‎@DanielRmito)

After a prominent North Korean general abruptly vanished from state news reports in February, South Korean officials reported he had been executed on corruption charges. On Tuesday, however, North Korea's state media made it clear that General Ri Yong-gil was very much alive — in fact, he'd just been promoted.

General Ri was one of several who were appointed to senior positions during the Workers' Party congress that wrapped up on Monday, the first such gathering in North Korea in 36 years, The New York Times reports. Ri had been the third-ranking figure in the army when he was reported to have been executed. Now it is believed he was simply demoted.

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