Our sources working as high-ranking officials in North Korea, having sought after related evidence for a long time, confirmed that Kim Jong-un has been handling the affairs related to guarding key figures of the government, including Kim Jong-il, following on from his reshuffling of the Guard Command from December, 2008, to August, 2009.
Just as Kim Jong-il had begun to receive daily reports and made decisions on the affairs related to his father's health and security following his unofficial designation as his successor, Kim Jong-un is overseeing the Guard Command's services related to Jong-il's health and security.
In April, 2010, Kim Jong-il promoted the military ranks of two of Guard Command's two officials: Yun Jong-lin to general and Kim Song-dok to colonel general. The source commented that "As Guard Command's chief (Yun) and its Party Official (Choi) each move up a rank, realigning of the entire Guard Command's over 100,000 officials, including the rear guard departments, has finally come to an end. For the first time in the North Korean Army's history, air force also joined the Guard Command's combat operations unit."
Guard Command had gone through partial reshuffle in 1995, after Kim Il-sung died. Its role and influence had been significantly undermined at one point, as the Guard Command's 'First Guard Unit,' the bodyguards of Kim Il-sung had been reduced to security guards for Kumsusan Memorial Palace, and its most important duty of escorting Kim Jong-il was handed over to the Security Command.
However, the Guard Command has since gone through reinforcement, and has gradually regained its original status, and was completely reshuffled in August 2008, prior to Kim Jong-un's official emergence. "The newly designated members of the Politburo Standing Committee, Ri Yong-ho and Choi Young-rim used to serve as bodyguards under Guard Command when they were soldiers and junior officers. Ever since their promotion at the 3rd Party Conference, the officials affiliated with the Guard Command made their way into the military as well as the party," the source said.
We plan to report on the facts discovered about Kim Jong-un and the sudden rise of his close aides in more detail, under the title of 'Kim Jong-un's Official Emergence.'
Translation by Hoyeon Choi Supervised by Samuel Martens
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