North Korea's Kim Jong Un Promoted Second in Command of Ruling Party's Central Military Commission

North Korea's Kim Jong Un, the third-son of leader Kim Jong Il, became second in command of the ruling Workers' Party's powerful Central Military Commission just a day after his father made him a four-star general.

These recent announcements are the first time the communist state mentioned Jong Un's name officially.

In practice, North Korea is now set to be co-ruled by the new official heir and their ailing 68-year-old leader.

"Due to the deterioration of Kim Jong Il' s health, transition is happening fast," said Ha Taekeung, president of Open Radio for North Korea, a non-profit organization with close regular contacts with sources inside the North.

A task force to put Jong Un on the throne was formed in 2007. His father, his aunt Kim Kyong Hui and her husband Jang Song Thaek and a few number of generals, have spearheaded a subtle nationwide campaign to build credibility for Jong Un.

These include the "150-day battle" in 2009 in which workers are pushed to work harder pledging allegiance to the young brilliant comrade referring to Jong-un.

"By now, he already holds a firm grip of internal affairs within the North with power to appoint middle-level officials," said Ha. "Our sources in Pyongyang have testified that even when it comes to high-level appointments, Jong Un is now deeply involved with his sick father simply endorsing his recommendations."

Analysts in Seoul say since Kim Jong Il's health has suddenly gone worse in recent weeks, the succession policy had to be accelerated.

Together with the new young co-ruler, Kyong Hui was also promoted to a general status on Tuesday although she and Jong Un have never served a day in the armed forces.

Her main job was to oversee production and distribution of consumer goods for North Korean households.

Her husband Jang Song Thaek has been a key confidant of the leader for decades playing a major role in consolidating military power to Kim Jong Il.

North Korea's Mysterious Future Ruler

Not much is known to the world about this mysterious young ruler-to-be.

Although the North Korean state media announced that Jong Un was present at the Workers' Party convention on Tuesday, there are still no signs of a single official photograph of him.

Educated briefly in Switzerland, his age is believed to be somewhere between 26 and 28.

Jong Un is reported to be the son of Kim Jong Il's third late wife, Ko Yong-hi who was the prima donna of North Korean opera in early years.

But there have also been reports that he is actually the son of Kim Ok who is currently a de facto acting first lady of North Korea.

Ok, a former pianist, has served as the leader's personal secretary since the 1980s and have accompanied Kim to state visits to China.

"Jong Un's known to be cruel and brutal. When firing officials, he does it very easily without thinking twice," said Ha who claims their organization's sources include government workers inside the North. "He's charismatic they say and always controls the meetings by speaking alone. Many are already afraid of him."

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