December 19th, 2011
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Communist leader Kim Jong-il passed away

kim-jongPyongyang: North Korean enigmatic communist leader Kim Jong-il died of heart failure due to a “great mental and physical strain” while traveling on a train. He was 69. A funeral for Kim Jong-il will be held in Pyongyang on 28 December, 2011. His youngest son, Kim Jong-un, is likely to be appointed leader to continue the family dynasty. He will head the funeral committee.

Kim is believed to have suffered a stroke in 2008, but he had appeared relatively vigorous in photos and video from recent trips to China and Russia and in numerous trips around the country carefully documented by state media.

In April 2009, North Korea’s constitution was amended and now implicitly refers to him as the “Supreme Leader”. He was also referred to as the “Dear Leader”, “our Father”, “the General” and “Generalissimo”. All party members, military men and the public should faithfully follow the leadership of comrade Kim Jong-un and protect and further strengthen the unified front of the party, military and the public,” the news agency said.

The death of the leader has come as a shock to South Korea too that has placed all government workers on “emergency alert”. South Korea’s news agency Yonhap said its President has placed all government workers on “emergency alert”, and reported that the Finance Ministry was holding emergency meetings.

“There is a big possibility that a power struggle may happen. It’s likely the military will support Kim Jong-un,” said Chung Young-Tae, from the Korea Institute of National Unification. “Right now there will be control wielded over the people to keep them from descending into chaos in this tumultuous time. What happens now is very important,” he said.


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