Tuesday, August 3, 2010

N.Korean Leader Transfers Secret Fund to Son

Seoul (News Today) - North Korea’s ailing leader Kim Jong-Il is transferring his secret personal wealth to his youngest son and likely successor, a Seoul-based radio station said Wednesday. The transfer of money has been managed by Ri Chol, who stepped down in April as the communist country’s ambassador to Switzerland, said Open Radio for North Korea, which specialises in North Korean news.

Ri has been considered one of Kim’s closest aides and looks after his secret funds abroad, it said. Analysts say Kim’s personal funds have been dwindling because of economic difficulties and tightened international sanctions on the reclusive communist state.

There have been widespread reports that Kim Jong-Un, 27, is being groomed to take over from his 68-year-old father, who suffered a stroke in August 2008. Some analysts say the North is likely to designate Kim Jong-Un as the leader’s political heir when it convenes a rare meeting of key communist party delegates in September.

South Korea’s spy chief Won Sei-Hoon said last month that Kim Jong-Il’s poor health was driving him to speed up preparations to transfer power to his son, who has been taking a greater role in policy-making. Kim Jong-Il took over from his own father, founding president Kim Il-Sung who died in 1994, in the communist world’s only dynastic succession.

Source : kompas

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