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N. Korean Propaganda Official Ri Jae-il Dies at Age 86

Write: 2021-02-06 14:28:02Update: 2021-02-06 15:27:33

N. Korean Propaganda Official Ri Jae-il Dies at Age 86

Photo : YONHAP News

A prominent former North Korean propaganda official has passed away.

The North Korean ruling party's Rodong Sinmun newspaper said Saturday that Ri Jae-il died aged 86 on Thursday from acute respiratory failure caused by lung cancer.

The Korean Central News Agency also conveyed the news, saying leader Kim Jong-un extended condolences and sent flowers.

Ri, a former journalist, became the First Deputy Director of the ruling Workers Party's Propaganda and Agitation Department in 2004.

He survived a large scale purge in 2014 when many senior officials of the department were removed.

His presence continued under the Kim Jong-un regime, including his reported role of assisting propaganda affairs led by Kim's younger sister Kim Yo-jong.

Ri continued to accompany the leader despite his old age, but disappeared from public events over the last two years. He was last seen at Pyongyang's Kumsusan Memorial Palace in 2018.

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