SEOUL: North Korea held its second mass parade in little more than a month yesterday, with leader Kim Jong-Un presiding over a display of goose-stepping paramilitary troops, marching bands and flower-waving civilians.
Leading the parade was the Worker-Peasant Red Guard -- a civilian militia with an estimated strength of more than three million active members.
At the start of the ceremony, tens of thousands of guards gathered in tight formation in Pyongyang’s Kim Il-Sung square, with hundreds of thousands more civilians in the background carrying brightly coloured flowers in the pattern of a giant national flag. It was the second big parade in little more than a month, but unlike July 27 -- the 60th anniversary of the end of the Korean War -- there was relatively little military hardware on display, with no drive-by of tank units or long-range missiles.
A few rocket launchers were included among the goose-stepping formations of militia men and women, but otherwise the event was dominated by wave after wave of patriotic floats, giant portraits of the leadership and flag- and flower-waving civilians.