• Switzerland's news in English
 
Switzerland home to Kim Jong-un 'for nine years'

Switzerland home to Kim Jong-un 'for nine years'

Published: 23 Apr 2012 09:35 GMT+02:00

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un lived in Switzerland from the age of seven, arriving two years earlier than previously thought, the Swiss paper Le Matin Dimanche reported on Sunday.

Previously Swiss media had placed his arrival in Switzerland in 1993 when he was around nine years old.

But the paper cited documents it had obtained from federal police archives at the public ministry to show he had stayed in Switzerland between late 1991 and early 2001.

The paper said it had obtained a document showing a request for accreditation of a certain Nam Chol Pak to work as a bureaucrat for North Korea's foreign ministry.

The document showed that the official arrived on November 25th 1991, with his wife, two sons and a daughter.

The two boys were the two youngest sons of Kim Jong-il, who ruled North Korea from 1994 until his death in December last year.

But they used the pseudonyms Chol Pak and Hun Pak while in Switzerland, and Hun Pak was Kim's alias, the paper said.

Little is known about the boy's formative years in the country. Schools where he was reportedly enrolled have refused to discuss his time there.

According to Swiss and foreign media, he was a pupil at an international private school in Guemligen, near the Bern suburb of Muri, and later attended a public school in Liebefeld, also near Bern.

Le Matin Dimanche, quoting an unnamed former classmate, reported early this month that he scored poor grades and was often absent.

The boy's false father initially worked for North Korea's mission to theUnited Nations in Geneva and was later transferred to the North Korean embassy in Muri, the paper said.

Today's headlines
Suspected stabber Nabilla freed from prison
Photo: AFP

Suspected stabber Nabilla freed from prison

Swiss model and French reality TV star Nabilla Benattia left a women’s prison in Versailles, France on Thursday on conditional release while facing charges of attempted murder after stabbing her boyfriend. READ  

Swiss school grad 'hero' among café siege victims
Photo: César Ritz Colleges/Facebook

Swiss school grad 'hero' among café siege victims

César Ritz Colleges, a Swiss hotel management school group, issued a tribute on its Facebook page to a former graduate who died while trying to end this week’s café hostage-taking incident in Sydney, Australia that left three people dead and five people injured. READ  

Forecast cuts 2015 Swiss economic growth
What, me worry? Swiss economy seen as continuing to defy trend in eurozone. Photo: Credit Suisse

Forecast cuts 2015 Swiss economic growth

The Swiss federal government's experts' group says Switzerland's economic prospects remain favourable in a "risky environment" although it cut its growth forecast for 2015. READ  

French businessman plans takeover of Orange

French businessman plans takeover of Orange

Apax Funds has announced it is selling Orange Switzerland, the country’s third largest mobile operator, to NJJ Capital, a holding company owned by French businessman Xavier Niel for 2.8 billion francs. READ  

Switzerland cracks top ten list for business
Zurich, Switzerland's biggest centre for business. Photo: Switzerland Tourism

Switzerland cracks top ten list for business

Switzerland ranks among the top ten best countries in the world to do business, according to Forbes magazine’s list for 2014. READ  

Central bank imposes negative interest rates
Photo: Michael Faes

Central bank imposes negative interest rates

With fresh turmoil in foreign exchange markets putting upward pressure on the franc, the Swiss National Bank announced on Thursday the introduction of negative interest rates. READ  

Swiss cheer Cuba and US on resuming relations
US President Obama announcing decision at the White House. Photo: Pool/AFP

Swiss cheer Cuba and US on resuming relations

Switzerland has extended congratulations to the United States for its decision to normalize diplomatic relations with Cuba for the first time since 1961 by opening a an embassy in Havana. READ  

US head of Fifa ethics committee quits
Photo: AFP

US head of Fifa ethics committee quits

Sepp Blatter, the Swiss leader of Zurich-based Fifa, said on Wednesday that he was "surprised" by the resignation of top corruption investigator Michael Garcia over the handling of his inquiry into the Qatar and Russia World Cup bids. READ  

Checking out snow sport alternatives to skiing
Photo: Jungfrau Railways

Checking out snow sport alternatives to skiing

You don’t have to ski to enjoy Switzerland in the winter. From snowshoeing to ski-jöring, non-skiers have plenty of ways to amuse themselves in the colder months. The Local's Caroline Bishop runs down some of the options. READ  

Middle East civilian rights urged in Geneva conference
Photo: The Local

Middle East civilian rights urged in Geneva conference

An international conference in Geneva on Wednesday called on both Israelis and Palestinians to respect humanitarian rights laws in the occupied territories, but was condemned by Israel as a "political exercise". READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Features
The Local's top ten snow sport alternatives to skiing in Switzerland
International
Swiss chocolate café at centre of hostage-taking drama Down Under
National
Why has The Local got a new logo?
Features
Exploring the 'most beautiful village' in French-speaking Switzerland
Business & Money
Italian thieves steal 260 tons of Swiss Lindt & Sprüngli chocolate
National
World's longest train tunnel — under the Swiss Alps — set to open in 2016
National
Switzerland's Christmas market season gets into full swing
National
Porn film on video screen spices up fare at Swiss McDonald's restaurant
National
Masturbation scene in Swiss TV ad for Media Markt draws complaints
National
Cantonal lawmakers end 'happy hours' tippling in Vaud pubs and bars
Politics
Former concert pianist Sommaruga elected as next Swiss president
Culture
Jailed German art forger's paintings go on sale at Bern gallery
Business & Money
Ikea founder Ingvar Kamprad's family listed as Switzerland's richest
Features
Long-time expats face dilemma: to be or not to be a Swiss citizen
National
Switzerland's voters massively reject strict immigration limits
Business & Money
Pieces of Napoleon's auctioned hair to be put in Geneva luxury watches
National
Activists petition federal government for ban on eating cats and dogs
National
Swiss meat firm faces scandal over alleged false labelling of products
Sport
Federer victory gives Switzerland its first Davis Cup tennis title
Business & Money
Italy's PM upset over Swiss mogul's acquittal in asbestos deaths
Business & Money
University of Zurich study finds 'banker's oath' could spur honesty
Sponsored Article
Exclusive offer: Try out home exchange
National
Swiss National Bank chief calls proposal to boost gold reserves 'fatal'
National
Mudslides kill four people in Ticino and neighbouring Italy
Culture
British X Factor star seeks internet support for Swiss Eurovision place
National
Court overturns ban by backing right for schoolgirl to wear scarf
National
Swiss ranking for English skills worsens among non-Anglo countries
Culture
Swiss model and French TV star Nabilla held for 'attempted murder'
Travel
Switzerland's Zermatt voted best ski resort in the Alps by skiers
Sport
VIDEO: FC Zurich claims crime after 'vicious' tackle hospitalizes player
Tech
Federal government announces new '.swiss' internet domain name
National
Zany emergency: Basel firefighters rescue ass stuck in manhole
Business & Money
American jury clears former UBS top executive of tax fraud
International
Switzerland ranks second to Norway in global 'prosperity' index
National
Financial regulator bans former Coop Bank CEO for three years
International
Switzerland slips in World Economic Forum's gender equality rankings
National
Job candidates unhappy with hiring process in Switzerland
National
Glacier 3000 opens new foot bridge spanning two mountains in Vaud
National
Swiss seek special Unesco heritage listing for yodelling and watchmaking
International
Switzerland regarded as best place in world for expats: global survey
National
Red faces at Migros over Hitler and Mussolini coffee cream pots
National
Quarter of workers in Switzerland 'stressed out': new survey
Travel
Lonely Planet ranks Zermatt among top places to visit in 2015
Features
Eritrean asylum seekers find refuge in Swiss monastery town
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

2,078
jobs available
The Local Spain is hiring!
The Local is seeking a new editor for our site in Spain to join our growing team of internationally-minded, driven, ambitious and clued-up journalists.
Details and how to apply