North Korea today celebrated the 110th anniversary of the birth of its founder and “eternal president”, Kim Il-sung, as well as grandfather of the current leader Kim Jong-un, amid fears of new military provocations that have seen the US, Japan and South Korea strengthen surveillance over the hermit country.
The alert, in addition to the 12 tests and missile launches made since the beginning of the year, is also motivated by the fact that in January the Workers’ Party announced that it was aiming to celebrate “significantly” the anniversary of April 15, the most important in the Northern calendar, known as the Day of the Sun. In 2017, for the 105th anniversary, Pyongyang held for example a large military parade on Kim Il-sung Square, but a similar initiative has so far found no confirmation for this year .
Ahead of the anniversary, Kim Jong-un attended a ceremony to celebrate the completion of a major housing project of 800 luxury apartments for Pyongyang’s elite. Only in the evening the state network Kctv showed the images of a live dance show held by thousands of young people in Kim Il-sung square and fireworks to light up the capital. As in past anniversaries, citizens laid flowers and bowed in respect to the giant statues of Kim Il-sung and his son Kim Jong-il, father of the current leader, on Mansu Hill in Pyongyang.
A military parade, according to the Seoul Unification Ministry, could be held on April 25 for the 90th anniversary of the founding of the Korean People’s Revolutionary Army, the first core of the current Korean People’s Army. On April 25, 1932, among other things, North Korean history starts the organization of anti-Japanese guerrilla forces by Kim Il-sung.
Many experts also pointed out that Pyongyang could take provocative actions around Monday, the day of the start of the joint US-South Korea military exercises that will be conducted on a large scale.