Kim Jong-un Brings Sunglasses Back into Fashion

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un speaks during his visit to the Samji Monument at Mt. Baekdu on Tuesday. /Rodong Sinmun North Korean leader Kim Jong-un speaks during his visit to the Samji Monument at Mt. Baekdu on Tuesday. /Rodong Sinmun

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has made a rare departure from copying the image of his grandfather, nation founder Kim Il-sung, by sporting a pair of sunglasses.

The elder Kim disdained the shades beloved of many of his fellow despots in the latter part of the last century. But his grandson donned a fine pair during a visit to the Samji Monument at Mt. Baekdu on Tuesday.

His father Kim Jong-il had a whole arsenal of tinted spectacles, though they were mostly of the elderly-widower type. Kim Jong-un's are snazzier.

Observers believe that Kim junior, marking his third year in power, is now trying to shape his own distinctive image after being made over into a clone of his grandfather in a bid to lend legitimacy to the young leader.

A source cited rumors that Kim's younger sister Yeo-jong has been coordinating his wardrobe since the ouster and execution of his mentor Jang Song-taek.

englishnews@chosun.com / Apr. 04, 2014 12:49 KST