Monday, June 24, 2024
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US ready to work with NKorea’s new regime

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Seoul: North Korea on Thursday burnished the image of its past and present leaders amid wintry scenes of mass grief, as Washington said it wants to work with the new regime when the mourning period ends next week.

“Please come back to the people you loved so much,” the state news agency quoted one army officer as saying as he viewed the bier of late leader Kim Jong-Il whose body is lying in state under a glass coffin.

Official media has reported mass mourning, said to involve five million people in Pyongyang alone, since Kim’s death was announced Monday. The nation has been urged to rally round his son Kim Jong-Un as the “great successor”. Even nature is heartbroken, according to the news agency which in its characteristic style reported weather phenomena at his supposed birthplace and a Manchurian crane adopting a posture of grief.

Kim Jong-Il and his father Kim Il-Sung, who ruled the communist nation with an iron fist since its creation in 1948, were the subject of an extravagant personality cult.

The latest dynastic ruler, aged in his late 20s, is also being showered with praise but remains a figure of mystery to the outside world. He was pictured on Wednesday weeping at his father’s coffin.

Elsewhere North Korean media has shown mourners braving freezing conditions to pay their respects to Kim senior, weeping in a park blanketed with snow as they laid flowers for the leader who presided over a disastrous 1990s famine. (PTI)

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