North Korea celebrates 'Liberation Day'
August 15 is celebrated as 'Liberation Day' in North Korea, commemorating the day Korea achieved independence from Japan.
This is the only legal holiday that both North and South Korea celebrate together, although each country interprets the day's significance quite differently.
South Korea celebrates the 'Day of Independence' as the day when national sovereignty was regained. President Lee Myung-bak is expected to call for nationwide harmony and unity in his National Liberation Day speech.
In contrast, North Korean celebrations focus on revolutionary spirit. Ahn Chan-il, Chief of the World Institute for North Korean Studies says, "North Korea interprets the day within its history of revolution, viewing it as the day Kim Il-sung and his anti-Japanese army recovered Korea's sovereignty.
As a pure ideological entity united by the Great Leader's revolutionary ideology, the steel-like fighting spirits joined in the passion for revolution."