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Kim named son reluctantly, brother says

Jan. 28, 2011 at 10:59 AM   |   Comments

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TOKYO, Jan. 28 (UPI) -- North Korean dictator Kim Jong Il did not really want a dynastic succession, says his eldest son, who was passed over.

Kim Jong Nam, who has long lived outside North Korea, spoke to the Japanese newspaper Tokyo Shimbun in an interview published Friday, the BBC reported.

Kim Jong Il has been grooming his youngest son, Kim Jong Un, 27, as his successor. Kim Jong Nam, who lives in Macau, is believed to have been shunted aside because of his extravagant lifestyle. In 2001, he was apprehended trying to enter Japan on a false passport.

Hereditary succession "does not fit with socialism, and my father was against it as well," he said. Yet Kim Jong Il succeeded his own father, Kim Il Sung.

Nevertheless, the son has been anointed "to stabilize the internal system," Kim said. "An unstable North Korea leads to instability in the region."

On Friday, North Korea called for parliamentary talks with the South to ease the standoff on the peninsula. Seoul's Unification Ministry spurned the move as "lacking sincerity."

But the two Koreas have slated military talks on North Korea's attack on Yeongpeong Island and the sinking of a South Korean warship.

Topics: Kim Jong Nam
© 2011 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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