N Korea 'marks 60th anniversary'

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North Korea is celebrating its 60th anniversary with reports of a large military parade in Pyongyang.

Reclusive leader Kim Jong-il was expected to attend, and his appearance was set to be closely watched because of speculation about his health.

However, a report from the Japanese news agency Kyodo said he failed to make an appearance.

The anniversary comes amid an impasse in international efforts to urge North Korea to abandon its nuclear programme.

So far the North's official media has made no mention of the parade, but on Monday, state-run television channel KRT showed footage of the North's cabinet holding a large indoor gathering to mark the anniversary.

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