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Digital Archive International History Declassified

February 24, 1978

HUNGARIAN EMBASSY IN THE DPRK, TELEGRAM, 24 FEBRUARY 1978. SUBJECT: CELEBRATION OF KIM JONG IL’S BIRTHDAY

This document was made possible with support from the ROK Ministry of Unification, Leon Levy Foundation

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    The birthday of Kim Jong Il is celebrated in a more modest way than in previous years.
    "Hungarian Embassy in the DPRK, Telegram, 24 February 1978. Subject: Celebration of Kim Jong Il’s birthday," February 24, 1978, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, MOL, XIX-J-1-j Korea, 1978, 80. doboz, 81-1, 001702/1978. Obtained and translated for NKIDP by Balazs Szalontai. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/116008
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On February 16th, the [celebration] of the birthday of Kim Jong Il (Kim Il Sung’s son) was more modest than in the previous years. On this day, the embassies could not hold such programs in which Koreans would have been involved. Both the opening of the Hungarian electro-technical exhibition and the Army Day press release of the Soviet embassy had to be held a day ahead of schedule. In contrast with the over one hundred wreaths that had been laid in front of the tombstone of [Kim Jong Il’s] mother last year, now there were only five, of which none was Kim Il Sung’s. It did not occur [like in the previous year,] that a crowd of several thousand persons would march to the memorial sites. Cuban students told us that there was no teaching on 16th. The students attended a seminar titled “Let’s follow Kim Jong Il,” which lasted the whole day. Similar programs were held at the workplaces as well.

47 – Sz.