Seoul, Dec 17 (efe-epa).- North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has visited the family mausoleum to commemorate the ninth anniversary Thursday of the death of his father, Kim Jong-il, in one of his few appearances this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Kim visited Kumsusan Palace of the Sun in Pyongyang, where the remains of his father and also those of his grandfather Kim Il-sung lie. There he laid a wreath, as is customary for the anniversary, the North Korean state news agency KCNA reported Thursday.
However, as is customary, it did not specify what date Kim went to the palace.
Kim was accompanied by important figures such as his sister Kim Yo-jong; Choe Ryong-hae, considered the regime’s number two; and the main person in charge of the country’s missile program, Ri Pyong-chol, KCNA said.
The officials “solemnly vowed to firmly defend and add luster to the idea and feats of Kim Jong-il and fulfill their heavy duty in the sacred struggle for a fresh victory of the socialist cause under the leadership of the Supreme Leader,” the report said.
Kim’s appearances in state media have been rare in 2020, a year marked by Covid-19, even though North Korea claims not to have registered a single case.
The country closed borders at the beginning of the year and put in place hard restrictions, especially in the capital, which recently led several United Nations countries to accuse the regime of using the pandemic to further violate the human rights of the population.
Kim’s appearances in the media in 2020 have been mostly limited to commemorations, such as in July for the 26th anniversary of the death of his grandfather and founder of North Korea, Kim Il-sung, or interventions in meetings of the political bureau in which the battered national economy or the management of the pandemic were mainly addressed. EFE-EPA