Supreme Leader (North Korean title)

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The supreme leader (Korean최고령도자; MRch'oeko ryŏngdoja) of North Korea is the de facto paramount leader of the party, state and army. The title has not been written into the national constitution as a separate office, but it currently states that the President of the State Affairs Commission is the supreme leader of North Korea. Likewise, according to the WPK Charter, the General Secretary of the WPK is the supreme leader of the Workers' Party. Formerly, under Kim Jong-il, this title was bestowed on the office of Chairman of the National Defence Commission, who was also the WPK General Secretary. Currently, General Secretary of the Workers' Party of Korea is the first priority political position of the supreme leader.[1]

Propaganda workers began calling Kim Il-sung supreme leader in the late 1940s and the term has since been used to describe the status of Kim Jong-il and Kim Jong-un. Generally however, Kim Il-sung and Kim Jong-il were both referred to as "Great Leader" (Korean:위대한 수령) and "Dear Leader" (친애하는 령도자) respectively during their tenures as leader.

Individuals bestowed the title[edit]

Picture Name Title Period Ideology
Kim Il Sung Portrait-3.jpg Kim Il-sung
김일성
(1912–1994)
Kim Il Sung Signature.svg
Premier of the Cabinet of the DPRK 9 September 1948 – 28 December 1972 Marxism-Leninism
Juche
Ten Principles
Chairman of the WPK 24 June 1949 – 12 October 1966
General Secretary of the WPK 12 October 1966 – 8 July 1994
President of the DPRK 28 December 1972 – 8 July 1994
Kim Jong il Portrait.jpg Kim Jong-il
김정일
(1941–2011)
Kim Jong-il Signature.svg
Chairman of the National Defence Commission of the DPRK 9 April 1993 – 17 December 2011 Juche
(Kimilsungism)
Songun
Ten Principles
General Secretary of the WPK 8 October 1997 – 17 December 2011
Kim Jong-un April 2019 crop.jpg Kim Jong-un
김정은
(born 1983)
Kim Jong-un Signature.svg
First Secretary of the WPK 11 April 2012 – 9 May 2016 Juche
Songun
(Kimilsungism-Kimjongilism)
Ten Principles
First Chairman of the National Defence Commission of the DPRK 13 April 2012 – 29 June 2016
Chairman of the WPK 9 May 2016 – 10 January 2021
President of the State Affairs Commission of the DPRK 29 June 2016 – present
General Secretary of the WPK 10 January 2021 – present
  • Bold offices refer to the highest positions in the Workers' Party of Korea, the unique ruling political party of North Korea.

Timeline[edit]

Kim Jong-unKim Jong-ilKim Il-sung

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un Cuts Tape for Completion of Sunchon Phosphatic Fertilizer Factory". Kim Il-sung University. Korean Central News Agency (KCNA). 2020-05-02. Retrieved 2020-05-02. Kim Jong Un, chairman of the Workers' Party of Korea (WPK), chairman of the State Affairs Commission of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and supreme commander of the armed forces of the DPRK, attended the ceremony.

External links[edit]