Four major newspapers in North Korea are now being published in full colour following Liberation Day on Saturday, which marked the 70th anniversary of Korea’s liberation from Japanese colonial rule.

Public newspaper reading stand in North Korea. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Rodong Sinmun, the official mouthpiece of the Communist Party, as well as three other newspapers including the Minju Chosun, began to publish in colour on Saturday.

Apart from Rodong Sinmun, the other three newspapers were previously printed in black and white, Yonhap News Agency reported.

Kim Jong-un. Photo: zennie62 via Flickr.

According to experts, the newspapers, which usually published pictures of Kim Jong-un and as well as North Korean citizens depicted in a positive light, are now being printed in colour to further strengthen the personality cult of the North Korean leader.

North Korea does not have freedom of the press and uses its media for propaganda purposes. Newspapers are traditionally filled with photos of Kim and his predecessors and serve to justify the rule of the family, the Korea Herald reported.

Recently, North Korea also set up a new timezone, “Pyongyang Time,” turning its clocks back by 30 minutes. The timezone came into effect on Liberation Day.

Karen is a journalist and writer covering politics and legal affairs in Hong Kong for HKFP. She has also written features on human rights, public space, regional legal developments, social and grassroots activism, and arts & culture. She is a BA and LLB graduate from the University of Hong Kong.