Kim Jong-il's Funeral Gets Underway

      December 28, 2011 13:34

      The state funeral of North Korean leader Kim Jong-il started at 10 a.m. on Wednesday at the Kumsusan Memorial Palace in Pyongyang. It included a salute from the honor guard and a march through Pyongyang.

      After the funeral, Kim's body will be laid to next to his embalmed father Kim Il-sung at the Kumsusan Memorial Palace after also being embalmed.

      At 10 a.m. on Thursday, 100,000 Pyongyang residents will gather in Kim Il-sung Square for a memorial service. They are expected to swear a loyalty oath to the new leader Kim Jong-un.

      In this photo released by the Korean Central News Agency on Tuesday, North Korean military personnel offer flowers to mourn their late leader Kim Jong-il in Pyongyang on Monday. /AP-Yonhap

      The handover of power to Kim Jong-un is proceeding at lightning speed. Immediately after Kim senior's death, the North Korean state media referred to Jong-un -- who only had the single title of vice chairman of the Workers Party's Central Military Commission -- as the "great successor" and "great leader." Later terms like "father" of the people and the "sun" were used, which had previously been applied to Kim Il-sung and Kim Jong-il.

      The North's official Korean Central News Agency dubbed Jong-un "a glorious leader of our party, nation, and military," hinting at Kim's impending ascent to the position of supreme commander of the Army and general secretary of the Workers Party.

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