North Korea's Kim celebrates the completion of the 'modern mountainous city'

SEOUL: North Korea celebrated the completion of the construction project of the signature of leader Kim Jong Un, a new city near the sacred mountain where his family claims its roots, and state media called it the epitome of modern civilization.

A massive fireworks celebration was held on Monday in the city near Mount Paektu, the official KCNA news agency said. Rodong Sinmun, a spokesman for the ruling party, posted photos showing Kim smiling while cutting a ribbon at the ceremony and the snow-covered buildings.

The city called Samjiyon is considered a socialist with new apartments, hotels, a ski resort and commercial, cultural and medical facilities.

KCNA said it could accommodate 4,000 families and that it has 380 blocks of public and industrial buildings on hundreds of hectares.

The city is one of the biggest economic initiatives that Kim has launched as part of its drive towards a self-sufficient economy, but its construction was delayed mainly due to the shortage of construction materials and labor as a result of the sanctions imposed to curb the Pyongyang nuclear program. .

Construction delays led Kim's regime to mobilize brigades of youth workers, which deserters and human rights activists compared to slave labor, since they do not receive pay, poor food and are forced to work more than 12 hours a day during Up to 10 years back to have better opportunities to enter a university or join the powerful Workers Party.