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North Korea's Kim Jong Un tops list of most powerful millennials

Kim has a "penchant for nuclear explosions," according to the British newspaper that published the rankings.
By Elizabeth Shim Contact the Author   |   March 16, 2016 at 2:21 PM
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SEOUL, March 16 (UPI) -- In a new ranking of the world's most powerful millennials that include U.S. celebrities Kim Kardashian and Beyoncé, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un occupies the top spot.

The list, compiled by The Guardian, includes a diverse range of public figures active in business, entertainment and politics.

The reclusive Kim, 33, topped the list of "powerful people" between the ages of 20 and 35, and the British newspaper noted that the North Korean ruler has a "penchant for nuclear explosions."

Kim entered the spotlight in 2011 when he assumed power after the sudden death of his father, Kim Jong Il – and has not backed away from nuclear provocations that most recently included claims of a "successful" hydrogen bomb test in early January.

The North Korean ruler has been connected to the alleged execution of his uncle-in-law Jang Sung Taek in 2013, and his aunt, Jang's wife, has disappeared from public life since.

Kim Kyong Hui was a prominent adviser to Kim Jong Il and held many positions in the Pyongyang government before she mysteriously vanished from the leadership.

Mohammed bin Salman, the 30-year-old deputy crown prince of Saudi Arabia, and Ekaterina Tikhonova, believed to be the daughter of Russian President Vladimir Putin, were the only other political figures on a list dominated by celebrities and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.

Despite Kim's hardline approach to governance, he has done a few things differently than his father, including being regularly seen with his wife, Ri Sol Ju.

Ri has appeared in stylish skirt suits, unlike her predecessors, Kim Jong Il's wife, Ko Yong Hui, who made public appearances in a North Korean uniform.

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