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Pyongyang Seeks Collective Leadership: Yonhap

Posted February. 26, 2007 07:23,   


North Korean leader Kim Jong Il is seeking to introduce a collective leadership system as he thinks he can’t extend the hereditary succession system to another generation, the Yohnap News Agency reported on February 25, quoting a foreign affairs official in Beijing.

“Although Kim Jong Il had been willing to hand down leadership to his eldest son Kim Jong Nam in the past, as circumstances deteriorated, he changed his mind and is preparing to introduce a collective decision-making system,” the official in the article claimed.

The source argues that Pyongyang has found it too difficult to justify another generational succession with proper reasoning, and that there have been objections among influential authorities as well. It is said that the Pyongyang was also worried about the Kim family bearing all the blame if they fail to deliver the country out of its economic plight.

However, there are still numerous dissenting predictions about North Korea’s leadership succession.

“It is natural that such conjectures are made, given that Kim Jong Il is now 65 years old and he was officially appointed as successor when his father Kim Il Sung was 62. There is nothing yet that indicates the next leadership system is under discussion,” another source that is well versed in North Korean affairs said.

“Kim Jong Il is not in a stable enough position to talk about his own succession,” argued this official. “If succession talks take place while the economy remains vulnerable, the leader might turn into a lame duck.”