Democratic People's Republic of Korea: 75th Birth anniversary of Dag Hammarskjöld


Issue date: 26/12/1980



Souvenir sheet:

1.    On the stamp: Dag Hammarskjöld, United Nations Secretary General, UN buildings in Geneva.

2.   On the sheet: UN buildings in New York and Geneva; emblems of UN and its agencies (including ICAO); peace doves; UPU emblem with a dove carrying a letter.


Original picture of Dag Hammarskjöld taken by the UN:



Souvenir sheet:

1.   On the stamps: Dag Hammarskjöld, United Nations Secretary General, UN buildings in New York (left) and Geneva (right).

2.  On the sheet: UN buildings in Vienna; emblems of UN and its agencies (including ICAO); peace doves; UPU emblem with a dove carrying a letter.



Perforated and imperforated.

Full sheet of stamps (cancelled to order - CTO):



Imperforated sheets.




Cancelled To Order (CTO).



First Day Covers (addressed; imperforate). The cachet shows the North Korean flag and the Grand Theater in Pyongyang, opened in 1960.




List of emblems surrounding the central stamp (from left down to right up):

-          WMO (World Meteorological Organization);

-          IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency);

-          IMCO (In 1982, this Agency changed its name from Inter-Governmental Maritime Consultative Organization – IMCO - to International Maritime Organization - IMO, while maintaining the emblem of IMCO);

-          ITU (International Telecommunication Union);

-          WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization);

-          ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization);

-          UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization);

-          ILO (International Labour Organization);

-          FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization);

-          WHO (World Health Organization).


The ICAO emblem depicted on the miniature sheets was no longer in use in 1980; the initials of the Organization in Cyrillic alphabet (ИKAO) are missing on that emblem. In recognition of the introduction of Russian as a fourth language of the Organization, the ICAO Council recommended to the 21st Session of the Assembly in September/October 1974 (held in Montréal, Canada) the adoption of the new official emblem shown at the left-side (Resolution A21-4).


Dag Hjalmar Agne Carl Hammarskjöld (29 July 1905 – 18 September 1961) was a Swedish diplomat and author, and was the second Secretary-General of the United Nations; he served from April 1953 until his death in a plane crash in September 1961 and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize posthumously. Dag Hammarskjöld remains the only U.N. Secretary-General to die in office. On 17 September night, Dag Hammarskjöld was en route to negotiate a cease-fire in Congo, when his Douglas DC-6 airliner crashed near Ndola, Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia); the official date of the death reported in all the reference material is 18 September 1961, as several watches on dead bodies had all stopped between 0010 and 0015hrs. Dag Hammarskjöld and fifteen others perished in the crash. The two souvenir sheets issued by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea for the 75th anniversary of Dag Hammarskjöld’s birth bear the date of death as 17 September instead of 18 September 1961. More information on this issue can be found by clicking on: Philatelic Laxity: Dag Hammarskjöld.


The FDCs show the flag of North Korea. The North Korean flag was officially adopted on 9 September 1948, after the separation of Korea into two separate nations. The national flag of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) comprises three horizontal bands: the middle band is red while the top and bottom bands are blue in color. The red band is bordered both above and below by a narrow white horizontal stripe. The red panel also bears a white disk that encircles a red five-pointed star. The red star stands for Communism and for the number of revolutions and battles fought for the freedom of the country. The color red marks the revolutionary ideals and the patriotic spirit displayed by the country men during the fight for independence. The star also symbolizes the role played by the Korean Workers Party in making the nation a better economic and political power during the turbulent period of the Second Civil War. The white disk represents the opposing principles of nature and also refers to the yin-yang symbol. According to ancient traditions, the disk also refers to the traditional Korean T'aeguk, symbol of the universe. The color white symbolizes homogeneous nature, purity, and transparency of the people of Korea. The blue bands are a representation of the nation’s independence and people's desire to maintain peaceful relations with the progressive nations of the world.