N. Korea releases pictorial book of foreign gifts received by late leader
Published : Jan 30, 2023 - 11:04
Updated : Jan 30, 2023 - 11:04
This photo caputured from North Korea's Foreign Language Publishing House on Monday, shows a basketball signed by Michael Jordan, in a photo book of gifts given to the country's former leader Kim Jong-il. (North Korea's Foreign Languages Publishing House)

North Korea has released a pictorial book of gifts given to its late leader Kim Jong-il from foreign leaders and governments, including a basketball signed by former NBA superstar Michael Jordan, a Pyongyang propaganda website showed Monday.

The 216-page book carries photos of various presents gifted to Kim, the father of current leader Kim Jong-un, displayed at the North's International Friendship Exhibition House, according to the North's Foreign Languages Publishing House website.

The book features the autographed basketball given by former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright to the late leader, who was known as an avid basketball fan, when she visited Pyongyang in October 2000.

It also carries photos of an embroidery from former Chinese President Jiang Zemin when Kim visited China in 2000, as well as a silver teapot set from Russian President Vladimir Putin during Kim's trip to Russia the following year.

The book includes other various gifts, including a golden lacquered folding screen from current Chinese leader Xi Jinping when he visited Pyongyang in 2008 as China's then vice president.

It, however, does not contain any items from South Korea.

"The picture album carries some of over 40,000 gifts presented to Chairman Kim Jong Il by foreigners from 170 countries and international organizations," the book reads.

The International Friendship Exhibition House, located in the country's northwestern province of North Pyongan, was established in August 1978 and displays gifts given to the country's leaders, including its late founder Kim Il-sung and current leader Kim Jong-un, according to the book.

Kim Jong-il ruled the reclusive country from 1994 until his death in December 2011. (Yonhap)