Actress kidnapped by North Korea and forced to make films dies aged 92

Choi Eun-hee was abducted by North Korea to make films for the state (AFP)

An actress from South Korea who was kidnapped by the North in the 1970s and forced to make films has died at the age of 92.

Choi Eun-hee and her ex-husband, director Shin Sang-ok, were both abducted under the orders from then-leader Kim Jong-il in the late 1970s.

The pair were forced to make films for the state but escaped after eight years, later returning to South Korea.

Choi Eun-hee poses with her husband, director Shin Sang-ok, in France in 1999 (AFP)

Mr Shin died in 2006 and the family of Ms Choi confirmed that she died in hospital on Monday afternoon.

Ms Choi's eldest son, director Shin Jeong-gyun, said: 'My mother passed when she went to hospital for kidney dialysis this afternoon.'

North Korea have always insisted that Ms Choi and her husband were not abducted, and travelled there to seek sanctuary.

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The pair rose to the top of South Korea's film industry before they divorced in the late 1970s.

Ms Choi's career took a downturn and she was approached by someone posing as a Hong Kong businessman with a proposal to form a film-making company which would put her back on the path to success, according to the book 'A Kim Jong-il Production'.

The book claims she was persuaded to go to Hong Kong, where she was abducted and placed in a guarded luxury villa in North Korea capital Pyongyang.

The pair were abducted under the orders of North Korea's then-leader Kim Jong-il (Rex)

Her husband was also abducted when he travelled to Hong Kong to look for her.

The couple worked on films for Mr Kim for eight years and travelled to Vienna to promote their work, where they sought political asylum in the US embassy before returning to their home country.

Ms Choi's funeral will be held on Thursday in South Korea capital Seoul.

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