Kim Jong Il is head of state

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NEW YORK - North Korea told the UN General Assembly yesterday that Kim Jong Il, son of the late President Kim Il Sung, was the country's new leader and commander of its armed forces.

The statement by Choi Su Hon, the North Korean deputy foreign minister, appeared to end any lingering doubts about whether Kim Jong Il had inherited the mantle of his father, who died 8 July. Mr Choi said that the new head of state enjoyed the absolute trust and infinite respect of the North Korean people Reuter