SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea says late leader Kim Jong Il’s body will be permanently laid in state in a memorial palace in the capital.

Kim’s body will be displayed at Pyongyang’s Kumsusan Memorial Palace, where his father and North Korea founder Kim Il Sung’s embalmed body has been lying since his death in 1994.

Kim Jong Il’s son and successor, Kim Jong Un, has been solidifying power since his father died of a heart attack on Dec. 17.

The official Korean Central News Agency said Thursday that North Korea will also erect a statue of Kim Jong Il, set up portraits of a smiling Kim and build “towers to his immortality” across the country.

The North says Kim’s Feb. 16 birthday will be a “Day of the Shining Star” in an apparent reference to past rocket launches.