SEOUL, South Korea (UPDATED) – North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-Un has been made “Marshal” of the communist state, Pyongyang’s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said Wednesday, July 18.
The title was previously held by Kim’s father and predecessor Kim Jong-Il, who was posthumously promoted to generalissimo in February this year.
“A decision was made to award the title of Marshal of the DPRK (North Korea) to Kim Jong-Un, supreme commander of the Korean People’s Army,” KCNA said.
The decision was jointly issued on Tuesday by several top state and party organs, it added.
Jong-Un became a general in September 2010. His promotion to a marshal came days after the country sacked its army chief Ri Yong-Ho as part of a reshuffle apparently aimed at tightening the new leader’s grip on the military.
Pyongyang made Hyon Yong-Chul a vice marshal earlier this week, paving the way for him to succeed Ri as the army head.
“With Hyon awarded the title of a vice marshal, Jong-Un apparently needed a new, higher military rank as the supreme commander of the military,” Cheong Seong-Chang of the Sejong Institute told AFP.
“This is the only title left for Jong-Un to decorate himself with after he assumed almost all party and army positions,” he said. – Agence France-Presse