By Julian Ryall, Tokyo
The lavish spending of Kim Jong-un, the North Korean dictator, is even putting the excesses of his late father in the shade, according to the United Nations Commission of Inquiry into Pyongyang’s human rights record.
Spending on luxury goods by the North Korean regime climbed to $645.8 million in 2012, the year after Mr Kim assumed control after the death of Kim Jong-il, the commission’s report stated. Records show that Kim Jong-il had treated himself to luxuries adding up to an average of $300 million a year.
Mr Kim also reportedly spent a sizeable sum on a private theatre for 1,000 of his closest allies. Analysts say the dictator is attempting to buy the loyalty of key members of the regime in an effort to secure his power base.