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N. Korea Bids Wintry Farewell to Late Leader

Tens of thousands of weeping North Koreans bade farewell Wednesday to longtime leader Kim Jong-Il as his young son and successor walked beside his father's coffin through a snowbound Pyongyang.

Kim Jong-Un was at the forefront of the three-hour procession, in what analysts said was an attempt to bolster the image of the untested new leader of the impoverished but nuclear-armed nation.

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N. Korea Prepares Huge Send-Off for Late Leader

North Korea was Tuesday preparing a massive ceremonial farewell to late leader Kim Jong-Il as it strove to strengthen a new personality cult around his youthful son and successor Jong-Un.

The secretive state has so far given no details of Wednesday's funeral for its "Dear Leader" of the past 17 years and has not invited foreign delegations to the ceremony.

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S. Korean Spy Chief under Fire over Kim's Death

South Korea's spy chief has come under fire for questioning North Korea's account of leader Kim Jong-Il's death, as well as failing to learn about his demise before it was officially announced.

The North said Monday that the 69-year-old Kim had died of a heart attack two days previously while on a train during one of his "field guidance" tours, portraying him as a martyr to duty despite the bitter cold.

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Report: N. Korea's Leader Issues First Army Order

North Korea's new leader Kim Jong-Un issued his first military order just before his father's death was announced, suggesting the son already controls the armed forces, a report said Wednesday.

Jong-Un ordered all units to halt field exercises and training and return to their bases, Yonhap news agency quoted a senior Seoul government source as saying.

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Kim Jong Il's Body Displayed as Son Visits Coffin

The body of North Korea's long-time ruler Kim Jong Il was laid out in a glass coffin Tuesday as weeping mourners filled public plazas and state media fed a budding personality cult around his third son, hailing him as "born of heaven."

North Korea's official television showed still photos of Kim in the coffin surrounded by wreaths, his body covered with a red blanket and his head on a white pillow. A giant red curtain covered a wall behind Kim.

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Clinton 'Deeply Concerned' for NKorea's Citizens, Hopes they Would Choose Peace Path

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the United States was "deeply concerned" for North Korea's citizens and offered "thoughts and prayers" in the wake of leader Kim Jong-Il's death.

It is in the U.S. hope the new North Korean leadership "will choose to guide their nation onto the path of peace by honoring North Korea’s commitments, improving relations with its neighbors, and respecting the rights of its people," Clinton said in a statement late Monday.

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U.S., Japan and SKorea Close Ranks Following NKorean Leader’s Death

Japan wants to hold a high-level three-way meeting with the United States and South Korea "as early as possible,” Tokyo said Tuesday, as the allies closed ranks following the death of Kim Jong-Il.

South Korea put its military on alert after the North Korean leader's death was announced on Monday and Japan, which has also been the object of Pyongyang's aggression in the past, ramped up its surveillance.

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Report: N. Korea Test Fires Short-Range Missile

Nuclear-armed North Korea test-fired a short-range missile off its east coast on Monday, the same day it announced the death of leader Kim Jong-Il, South Korea's Yonhap news agency said.

The agency quoted an unnamed government official as saying the missile launch was unrelated to the announcement that Kim had died Saturday of a heart attack.

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Kim Jong-Un: North Korea's Enigmatic Heir Apparent

The young man tipped to be North Korea's next leader and propel the Kim dynasty into a third generation is even more of an enigma than his mercurial father Kim Jong-Il, who has died at the age of 69.

North Korean state media on Monday urged people to pledge allegiance to Kim's youngest son and heir apparent Kim Jong-Un, aged in his late 20s, after the stunning announcement that his father had died on Saturday.

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World Reacts to N. Korea Leader’s Death

Minutes after the announcement of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il’s death, the world leaders were on alert on Monday urging Pyongyang to engage with the global community.

The United States swiftly closed ranks with its ally South Korea, as President Barack Obama called his close friend President Lee Myung-Bak of South Korea at midnight on the U.S. east coast, as Washington and its regional allies digested the death of the Stalinist state's volatile 69-year-old leader.

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