Published : 2013-01-08 20:43
Updated : 2013-01-08 20:43
The quiet passing of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's birthday on Tuesday raised curiosity over the regime's mythologization tactics toward the young leader in a country where the birthdays of his late father and grandfather are still observed as holidays of extravagant celebration.
Normal broadcasting hours in the North on Tuesday indicate that the country has not designated the Jan. 8 birthday of the incumbent leader as a national holiday, even though he took power over a year ago.
Kim became the leader of the reclusive country following the sudden death of his father in December, 2011.
The country's key mouthpiece Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) and other main news outlets remained mum about the leader's birthday, making no mention about the event.
This compares with the country's speedy move to celebrate the birthdays of Kim Jong-il after the death of his father.
The Feb. 16 birthday of Kim Jong-il, known as the Day of the Shining Star, was named a national holiday in 1982 while he was only an heir to North Korean founder Kim Il-sung who died in 1994.
The April 15 birthday of the founder, known as the Day of the Sun, is also one of the country's most-widely celebrated national holidays.
Analysts said the North may still be in the course of glorification process for the young leader who took the helm of the communist country in a shorter period of time than his father.
The country also had a quiet passing of Kim's birthday last year, which came only a few weeks after his father's death.
"It's been only one year after the death of chairman Kim Jong-il, and the North would have felt the sense of burden due to uneasy economic conditions and (abstained) from designating it as a national holiday," Dongkuk University professor Koh Yu-hwan said.
"The country may go ahead with the holiday designation after further power solidification."
As part of ongoing efforts to stress the leader's everyday activities, KCNA reported on Monday Kim's provision of candy and other confectionary gifts to children, without referring to his birthday.
The country's main newspaper Rodong Sinmun also extolled Kim's role in building a welfare complex in Pyongyang on Monday.