A South Korean spy hid a micro-recorder on his penis while meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Il and was trained to kill himself with his finger if he was caught, the agent revealed in a new interview.
Park Chae-seo, known as Black Venus, smuggled the clandestine device into his urethra during a half-hour meeting with the dictator, who is the father of the current leader King Jong-un.
Few spies have come so close to the leader of an enemy state, and less to one as lonely as the isolated North, as did the South Korean spy, code-named "Black Venus."
Before meeting with the North Korean leader, Kim Jong Il, Park was told to stay up late, take a shower and dress neatly before being told to hide a micro-recorder in his penis.
In the 1990s he passed himself off as a disgruntled former military officer of South Korea who became an entrepreneur looking to shoot commercials for companies from the South in picturesque northern locations.
Scroll down to watch the video.
Park Chae-seo (left) met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Il (right) in 1997, while working as a spy of the South during the battle of the rivalry in the peninsula.
Actor Hwang Jung-min plays the role of South Korean agent & # 39; Black Venus & # 39; in the new movie about his time as a spy
On the way to meet Kim, he says he has sold old pottery for millions of members of the ruling family of the North, and has seen Northern Army officers counting huge bribes paid by southerners in political plots.
Now its history has become a book and a film that sheds new light on the nebulous connections, some financial, other policies, that cross the demilitarized zone that divides the peninsula.
With North and South engaged in a better diplomatic relationship lately, & # 39; The Spy Gone North & # 39; has been an instant bestseller and a blockbuster, the film attracts five million viewers in its first three weeks of release: about 10 percent of the entire population of the South
Park, 64, told AFP in a rare interview with foreign media: "Living as a spy was extremely stressful." It could be exposed by the slightest mistake, like a stupid slippage of the tongue & # 39;
But unlike the northern agents sent to the south, he did not receive suicide pills to guarantee a quick end if captured.
Instead, he explained, "we were trained to kill ourselves with our own fingers." using "some critical points in the body".
North Korean leader Kim Jong Il met with & # 39; Black Venus & # 39; when the agent had a recording device hidden in his penis
Park says he helped members of the Kim family to sell glazed pale celadon glazed ceramics discovered in the north for rich South Koreans, and visited a stash of hundreds more hidden near Mount Myohyang, accompanied by a South Korean expert who valued them in more of a billion dollars.
In 1997, after several trips north, he was taken to the Paekhwawon guesthouse in Pyongyang, where Kim Jong Il was working normally during the night.
Park had a 30-minute meeting with the leader himself, with the tape recorder hidden in his urethra.
Kim did not bother to shake hands when she entered the room for the 30-minute meeting, said Park, who focused on collecting in ceramics.
He said: & # 39; His voice was a little hoarse. "Far from being nervous for fear of being exposed, I felt quite relieved because it meant that I had gained the complete trust of the North."
Park started in military intelligence in 1990, with the task of gathering information about the nuclear program of the North, and then in its initial stages.
He became friends with a Chinese nuclear physicist of Korean descent who, in return for a payment of one million dollars, later revealed that the North had manufactured two low-level nuclear weapons.
Former South Korean spy Park Chae-seo, whose codename is "Black Venus," was interviewed in Seoul. He met the North Korean leader Kim Jong Il in 1997
When he joined the Southern spy agency in 1995, then known as the Agency for National Security Planning (ANSP), he was given the code name Black Venus.
Based in Beijing, he worked for a South Korean company importing Chinese agricultural products, disguising them as North Korean duty-free products, and built a network of contacts and other North Korean informants.
It also bribed North Korea's high authorities, who once provided the interim head of the Pyongyang spy agency with fake high-quality Rolex watches when he visited Beijing.
His big break came when he allegedly helped organize the release of a nephew of Jang Song Thaek, the influential uncle of current leader Kim Jong Un, who was executed as a traitor in 2013.
The spy says he managed to free him from a Chinese prison by helping pay 160,000 dollars of the debts the nephew owed to the Chinese merchants.
Hwang Jung-min as Park Chae-seo in The Spy Gone North, which represents the exploits of secret agents during the 1990s
Hwang Jung-min (left) in action in the new movie The Spy Gone North, which has already been seen by five million people in the country
A grateful Jang family invited Park to Pyongyang and took the opportunity to sign a $ 4 million contract between his advertising company and a tourism agency in North Korea to shoot television commercials in places such as Korea's spiritual home. Mount Paektu and Mount Kumgang, where the two sides hold meetings of divided families.
At that time, North Korea desperately needed funds, with its socialist economy collapsing after the collapse of the Soviet Union, its main source of funding and millions of people dying of hunger.
Kim also expressed great interest in the upcoming South Presidential poll, according to Park.
Cross-border military crises tend to occur in the election years in the south, which helps to shift undecided votes to conservatives, a phenomenon known as the 'north wind'. In the south.
Park claimed that he got the nephew of Jang Song Thaek, the influential uncle of current leader Kim Jong Un, who was executed as a traitor in 2013, released from a Chinese prison
The founder of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea billboard, Kim Il-sung, (left) and his son Kim Jong Il (right) in Pyongyang
North Korean agents flew Korean Air Flight 858 over the Andaman Sea, killing 115 people, less than three weeks before the southern 1987 presidential election.
And before the 1997 presidential election, says Park, North Korean officials told him that three supporters of conservative candidate Lee Hoi-chang had asked them to organize an armed attack days before the polls.
In a hotel room in Beijing, Park states, "with my own eyes, I saw the North Koreans count the wads of dollars in their hotel room they received from the South Koreans," supposedly in return.
There were 36 packages, each of them $ 100,000 & # 39;
He reported his findings to his ANSP leaders and the campaign of the Liberal candidate Kim Dae-jung, who made them public. In the end there was no incident and Kim won a narrow victory.
The trio of Lee supporters were later convicted for violating the Southern National Security Law, which prohibits contact with the North, but they were acquitted on appeal before the Supreme Court after Park refused to testify.
With his cover, Park was fired by the spy agency and moved to China, spending much of his time on the golf course.
The ANSP, now known as the National Intelligence Service, declined to comment on Park's accusations.
After the South Korean conservatives returned to power, they brought in a new spy chief and Park was arrested in Seoul in 2010 and sentenced for passing classified information to the North, despite insisting that he only transmitted low-level intelligence to earn the trust of Pyongyang.
"I was in solitary confinement for six years," he said, describing his imprisonment as politically motivated.
Scene from the new movie in which Park claims he was ordered to carry out an attack with politically motivated weapons in preparation for a crucial presidential election
The new movie takes place during the 1990s, when tensions between the two Koreas were high and espionage on both sides was plagued by
His story offers a glimpse of a "suspicious but hitherto inaccessible truth" in inter-Korean relations, wrote film critic Lee Yong-cheol in the magazine Cine21.
And if the winds of geopolitics change once again and leave him on the wrong side, Park has an insurance policy: the recordings he made of his meetings with Kim Jong Il, Jang Song Thaek and other officials.
He says they were not available when he was suddenly arrested in 2010, but now he keeps them safe & # 39; somewhere in a foreign country & # 39;.
Although an armistice was signed in 1953, the two Koreas have remained technically at war since 1950.
Tensions throughout the demilitarized zone have exploded over the decades as the North defied international agreements on nuclear weapons testing.
In June of this year, the president of EE. UU., Donald Trump, met with Kim Jong-un at a summit in Singapore.