NORTH Korean leader Kim Jong-un controlled the weather as he scaled a 9 000ft sacred mountain wearing just black leather shoes, North Korea’s state media claim. Deep snow and frigid temperatures of -20C were no match for the state’s leader as he climbed Mount Paektu, the country’s highest peak, it was claimed.
There was a blizzard but Kim “controlled nature” during the climb, as the nasty weather conditions cleared and made way for “dazzling sunshine” and clear blue skies, state media said.
The report claims the mountain offered a “warm welcome” to the leader as it showed “joy at the appearance of the peerlessly illustrious commander who controls nature”. The visit has sparked speculation that Kim was planning a significant event, as leaders’ past visits have been followed by important decisions or acts, including executions.
Kim was pictured smiling and laughing as he appeared almost two weeks after the country’s latest missile launch. In November 2013, Kim visited the mountain a month before he executed top officials including his uncle Jang Song-thaek, while a visit in April 2015 was followed by the execution of former defence chief Hyon Yong-chol, the South Korean newspaper JoongAng Daily reported.
Kim also visited the mountain after Pyongyang’s fifth nuclear test in September last year. It was also speculated that the most recent pilgrimage was to celebrate the November 29 missile launch, with state media saying he climbed the mountain to emphasise his military vision.
Kim inspected a local village, ordered the construction of a new hotel for mountain tourists and paid tribute to a state of his late father Kim Jong-il, it was reported. Called “the sublime mountain of revolution”, Paektu is an active volcano on North Korea’s border with China.
It is considered sacred by Koreans as it was said to have been the birthplace of Dangun, the founder of the first Korean kingdom. Paektu has long been used for propaganda purposes by the state. The report claims Kim “often” scales the peak, but this was the first time he had done so in winter.
It added: “Imposingly standing on Janggun Peak, the respected Supreme Leader gave a familiar look for a while at the dizzy cliffs and the sea of trees, recalling the emotion-charged days when he realised the great historic cause of completing the state nuclear force without yielding even a moment and with the indomitable faith and will of Paektu.
“His eyes reflected the strong beams of the gifted great person seeing in the majestic spirit of Mount Paektu the appearance of a powerful socialist nation which dynamically advances full of vigour without vacillation at any raving dirty wind on the planet.”
North Korea is trying to develop a nuclear warhead capable of hitting the US mainland, and has carried out a number of missile tests and one nuclear test this year despite UN sanctions.
The US, Japan and South Korea are set to hold two days of missile tracking drills starting Monday amid rising tensions over Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons programme. Last week, North Korea said military drills held by the US and the South had made the outbreak of war “an established fact”.— Mirror Online