Pyongyang, North Korea on Monday celebrated the 107th birth anniversary of its founder Kim Il-sung with festivities.
In an editorial marking the late founder’s 107th birthday, the North’s main Rodong Sinmun newspaper lauded him and urged the country to “depend completely” on the current leader Kim Jong-un and follow his leadership until the end, reports Yonhap News Agency.
Dubbed the ‘Day of the Sun’, Kim Il-sung’s birthday, April 15, is one of the biggest national holidays in North Korea. This year’s anniversary came as North Korea held a series of political events to solidify leader Kim Jong-un’s grip on power.
The current leader has been seeking to emulate his grandfather since taking office in late 2011.
On Monday, the North’s state TV began its programming earlier than on other national holidays and broadcast programmes highlighting the achievements of the late founder and the legitimacy of the current Kim Jong-un regime.
On the eve of the anniversary, the North also held a national meeting to mark the anniversary, with a number of top officials attending it, including the country’s newly appointed No. 2 leader Choe Ryong-hae.
In the past, the North used to mark the anniversary with military parades to flex its military muscle, but the country has refrained from such provocative events since the negotiating process kicked in last year.