Thu. Jul 18th, 2024

North Korea’s intention when releasing a portrait of Kim Jong-un

North Korea's intention when releasing a portrait of Kim Jong-un 0
North Korea's intention when releasing a portrait of Kim Jong-un 0

Portrait of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un (right) and Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel outside Pyongyang airport.

In North Korea, portraits of late leaders Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong-il are hung in most offices, schools and public spaces.

`Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong-il are considered gods` in North Korea, said Je Son Lee, who defected from the country in 2011.

Kim Jong-un came to power in 2011 after his father’s death, but he had no official portrait until this week.

North Korea expert Soo Kim assessed that the publication of the portrait shows that Mr. Kim believes he has entered a new stage of leadership.

The new portrait may also be intended to show how North Korea is changing.

The decision to wear a suit and tie instead of more traditional attire may also signal an attempt to separate from his father’s closed image.

`The eight summits with foreign leaders are a joy for Pyongyang’s propaganda machine, helping them portray the leader as an internationally respected diplomat, on par with Xi Jinping and Donald Trump

In the picture, `he looked very cheerful and happy,` Soo Kim said.

North Korea's intention when releasing a portrait of Kim Jong-un

Portrait of late North Korean leader Kim Il Sung (left) and Kim Jong-il in a square in Pyongyang.

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Muhn predicted the portrait would be produced on a large scale and hung nationwide.

Hotham believes that the publication of the painting is a sign that Pyongyang is beginning to take steps `to develop the cult of personality of Kim Jong-un. North Koreans will certainly understand the symbolism of this move.`

`It’s just a picture but it says a lot,` Soo Kim commented.

Phuong Vu

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