Jakarta. The Bali-based Sukarno Center will this year award its annual prize for global statesmanship to Kim Jong Un of North Korea, hailing him as a champion in the fight against neocolonialism and imperialism.
Rachmawati Soekarnoputri, a daughter of Indonesia’s founding president, after whom the award is named, made the announcement on Thursday following a meeting with Ri Jong Ryul, Pyongyang’s ambassador to Jakarta.
“We will give the award to President [sic] Kim Jong Un because he has been consistent in carrying out the ideals of the great leader, Kim Il Sung, which is to fight imperialism,” Rachmawati said.
The Sukarno Prize, traditionally handed out in recognition of contributions to world peace and development, has previously been awarded to luminaries such as Aung San Suu Kyi of Myanmar and India’s Mahatma Gandhi.
It is unclear how Kim Jong Un, whose saber-rattling and bellicose policies have exacerbated already strained and frosty ties with South Korea, Japan and the United States, has contributed in any way to world peace or compares even remotely with the above democracy icons.
Rachmawati noted that the Sukarno Center had previously presented the award to Kim Il Sung, whom she called a hero of independence and peace.
“So this will be a sequel, where we give the award to Kim Jong Un for his persistence in fighting neocolonialism,” she said.
Rachmawati has been appointed the honorary Asia-Pacific chairwoman of Pyongyang’s Korean reunification preparation committee – a body not recognized beyond the borders of the hermit kingdom.