The contrasting paths of power of the President of South Korea and the leader of North Korea
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The contrasting paths of power of the President of South Korea and the leader of North Korea

South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will have an important summit on April 27.

The Korean President rose from poverty

South Korean President Moon Jae-in.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in’s parents were born in a small village in Hungnam province in present-day North Korea.

When the Korean War broke out in late 1950, Kim Il Sung’s forces surrounded the city, and Moon Yong-hyung, his wife Kang Han-ok and 100,000 others fled the North in the `Hungnam Evacuation`,

Mr. Moon Yong-hyung is a quiet man, educated, very interested in social issues but has no business ability, so he falls into debt and becomes depressed.

`Even when he opened a small store, everyone said it would go nowhere. He was like that the whole time,` the South Korean President wrote in an autobiography.

The whole family relies on food from Catholic nuns and until now President Moon still identifies as a Catholic.

`He lived all his life as a refugee and in poverty. He expected a lot from me, but before he could see his son’s success, he passed away. I am very miserable and tormented about this,`

But Mr. Moon inherited his father’s academic ability and social awareness, becoming a lawyer and a human rights activist under South Korean President Park Chung-hee, the father of the imprisoned former president.

He became a lawyer and was close friends with lawyer Roh Moo-hyun, who later served as president of South Korea.

Another role model for Mr. Moon is President Kim Dae-jung, who received the Christmas Peace Prize for his `Sunshine Policy` toward North Korea.

Mr. Moon lost the 2012 presidential election to rival Park Geun-hye.

The North Korean leader was born into luxury

The contrasting paths of power of the President of South Korea and the leader of North Korea

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s path to power is in complete contrast to South Korean President.

However, independent experts and Soviet records said that Kim Jong-il was actually born in a village in Siberia, where his father Kim Il Sung lived in exile.

Much of Kim Jong-un’s young background is kept secret, and his date of birth is unclear, but Mr. Kim really lived a life of luxury, according to AFP.

Kim Jong-un’s mother is Ko Yong-hui, Kim Jong-il’s third wife.

School staff and classmates, who did not know Kim Jong-un’s background, described him as shy, fond of skiing, basketball and a big fan of Hollywood actor Jean-Claude Van Damme.

Kim Jong-un, believed to be in his 30s, only appeared in public in 2008 when his father suffered a stroke and Pyongyang planned to find a successor.

In 2011, Kim Jong-il died, Kim Jong-un officially became the leader of North Korea.

Kim Jong-un’s hairstyle, clothes, demeanor, public speaking and even handwriting are all very similar to his grandfather Kim Il Sung.

However, up to now, Kim Jong-un is still an unknown in the international arena.

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