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Kim Jong Il's body to lie in state in same palace as father's

The body of Kim Jong Il lies in state in a glass coffin in Pyongyang on December 20, 2011.

Story highlights

  • North Korea plans to erect a statue of Kim Jong Il and build towers across the country
  • His body will lie in state in the Pyongyang palace that houses the corpse of Kim Il Sung
  • Kim Jong Il's death, announced last month, has put the region on edge
  • The regime says his birthday will now be known as "the Day of the Shining Star"

The body of the late North Korean leader Kim Jong Il will lie in state in the Kumsusan Memorial Palace in Pyongyang, which houses the corpse of his father, Kim Il Sung, North Korean state-run media reported Thursday.

The secretive state also plans to erect a statue of Kim Jong Il and build towers across the country to symbolize his "immortality," the state-run Korean Central News Agency reported, citing orders from the leaders of the ruling Workers Party.

North Korea announced Kim Jong Il's death on December 19, putting the region on edge as observers speculated about the nuclear-armed regime's stability and future direction.

Pyongyang held an elaborately choreographed funeral procession and memorial ceremony the following week that served to underline the elevation of Kim Jong Un -- the youngest son and chosen successor of Kim Jong Il -- to the position of "supreme leader" of the country.

On Thursday, the regime also announced that February 16, Kim Jong Il's birthday, will henceforth be known as "the Day of the Shining Star." His father's birthday is dubbed "the Day of the Sun" in the North Korean calendar.

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