On Friday, a day after North Korea completed its nearly two weeks of “mourning” for the late Kim Jong-il, the country sent a stern message to the world vowing that it would not alter policies despite the death of their “Dear Leader.”
North Korea is widely known as an intelligence “black hole” and leaders of the international community have expressed grave concerns over the future of the nuclear-armed nation, especially under a new and inexperienced leader.
The North Korean populace lives in some of the worst human rights conditions on the planet, with virtually no freedoms and all aspects of cultural, political, and social life tightly monitored and controlled by the leading Workers’ party.
North Korea is the worst persecutor of Christians in the world and Christians routinely face punishment, death, torture, or imprisonment if they are discovered practicing their faith.
Although some analysts hoped that Kim Jong-il’s youngest son and successor, Kim Jong-un, would provide a glimmer of hope for renewed international engagement and diplomatic ties due to his Western education, North Korea sternly shot down those hopes on Friday.
“We declare solemnly and confidently that the foolish politicians around the world, including the puppet group in South Korea, should not expect any change from us,” North Korea’s National Defense Commission said in a statement.
The statement also concluded that North Korea would “never deal with the traitor group of Lee Myung-bak.”
Lee Myung-bak is the current President of South Korea whose aid policies toward North Korea have strained already fragile ties between the two countries.
The statement came only a day after North Korea declared Kim Jong-un as the country’s new “Supreme Leader” of the ruling Workers’ party, military, and the people at a Thursday memorial service held for his late father in Pyongyang in Kim Il-sung square.