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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

7/26/2012 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

North Korean leader, Kim Jong Eun appears in public with his new wife.

North Korea is happily announcing the marriage of leader Kim Jong Eun to a young, slender woman, identified as, "Comrade Ri Sol Ju." The pair has been seen in public on numerous occasion, leading to speculation regarding her role.

Kim Jong Eun and his new wife, Ri Sol Ju.

Kim Jong Eun and his new wife, Ri Sol Ju.

Article Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

7/26/2012 (1 year ago)

Published in Asia Pacific

Keywords: North Korea, Kim Jong Eun, Ri Sol Ju, reform


TOKYO, JAPAN (Catholic Online) - The very announcement is surprising since North Korea has always kept the wives and women of its leaders in seclusion, well out of the public eye and comment. Many see it as a sign of change in the traditionally strict and austere country although no substantial reforms have yet occurred. 

Kim and Ri have made several public appearances, and either she is a good actress or she genuinely loves him. On several occasions the two have been seen close to one another, sometimes with Ri leaning in towards him and the couple even touching. For the ultra-conservative, secretive regime, this is an astounding development.

And while Kim and his retainer appear dressed in fine clothes, their suits appear quite similar and dark, almost like uniforms. However, Ri's apparel is bright and cheery by comparison. Ri is often seen wearing yellows and reds with polka-dots. She has also been seen wearing a knee-length skirt. 

While this alone is a sign of change, there is no sign that change will be coming for the ordinary citizens of the country. 

Kim has now led the reclusive state for seven months, following the death of his father last December. Hopes for swift reform have been dashed as Kim has spent the last several months consolidating his power. 

Crackdowns on critics have continued and several high-ranking officials have been dismissed, their powers handed to Kim who now sits at the head of the military as well as the Worker's Party. And people who have attempted to flee the country have also been arrested and punished. 

Kim might still show himself to be a reformer, but it will take more than an attractive young wife to prove it to the rest of the world. 

 

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