North Korea’s supreme leader Kim Jong Un addressed a key meeting of the rogue country’s ruling party, underscoring his desire to align with foreign nations against US interests in the region.
Speaking from the stage and backed by large, crimson displays bearing the Workers’ Party of Korea emblem, Kim offered to “direct the struggle” for the coming year.
“He set the combat tasks for the People’s Army and the sectors of the munitions industry, nuclear weapons and civil defense to further accelerate war preparations, based on the in-depth analysis of the serious political and military situation on the Korean Peninsula that he reached [the] extreme due to the confrontational moves against the DPRK by the US and its vassal forces, unprecedented in history,” the Korean Central News Agency reported.
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The abbreviation “DPRK” stands for “Democratic People’s Republic of Korea”, the official name of the country.
The KCNA report continued, “[Kim] clarified the independent principle of the WPK to expand and develop strategic cooperative relations with anti-imperialist independent countries and vigorously carry out anti-imperialist joint action and struggle on an international scale under the rapidly changing global geopolitical situation and indicated the orientation of foreign affairs and work to the south”.
KCNA is North Korea’s state media, owned, operated and published by the ruling authoritarian government.
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North Korea has worked extensively over the past year to increase cooperation with regional allies Russia and the People’s Republic of China.
Kim has been in contact with both Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin – to meet the latter face-to-face, the supreme leader made a rare trip out of the country by train.
North Korea’s Workers’ Party Central Committee gathered in Pyongyang on Tuesday for a multi-day plenary session to review policies leading into the new year.
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Kim already spoke at the party meeting in Pyongyang, where he called 2023 “a year of great turning and great change” and “a year of great significance”.
He said on Tuesday that the past year in North Korea has achieved “wins and eye-opening events achieved in all fields for socialist construction and strengthening of national power.”
While North Korea’s supreme leader has historically been expected to deliver a New Year’s address to the nation, Kim delivered the annual recap address at Labor Party meetings from 2020.