Sunday has been election day in North Korea and there has been a carnival atmosphere in Pyongyang with singing, dancing and traditional costumes on the streets.
Perhaps the holiday mood was because voters don’t have too much to think about as they cast their ballots for the country’s rubber-stamp parliament.
The only choice is ‘yes’ or ‘no’ for the sole candidate standing in each constituency. In the last poll, five years ago, these designated candidates got 100 percent backing, with the turnout a more than respectable 99.98 percent.
It is, of course, an election in name only in the totalitarian state run by Kim Jong-un.
This is the first election to the Supreme People’s Assembly since he succeeded his father, following’s Kim Jong-il’s death in December 2011.
For foreign observers, the propaganda and pageantry is interesting largely because the list of candidates gives an insight into who is in, or out, of favour after the recent purge ordered by Kim in which his own uncle was executed.