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Saturday, December 3, 2016

Personnel and policy: the first in 36 years, the party Congress in Korea


On Friday, may 6, in Pyongyang, opened the Congress of the workers ‘ party of Korea (WPK). Forum of this kind was not held in the DPRK for nearly forty years. As expected, the party Congress (the homeland of Juche has called it “historic”) will allow us to define new development priorities of North Korea in the coming years. “MK” asked what this actually means.


photo: youtube.com

According to the Charter of the WPK, the Congress is the Supreme body of the party, who is obliged to meet every five years. The last time the KWP Congress was held in 1980, a little later than scheduled. Why the meeting is not convened after that, remains unknown. Congress in 1980 established the principle of succession of power to Kim dynasty were also made personnel changes within the party.

The new event is expected to be thoroughly analyzed the conditions of change of North Korea policy and personnel changes within the party leadership. Recall that in recent years at the initiative of Kim Jong-UN in the highest echelons of power were held a large-scale cleaning. So, in 2013, was executed uncle of North Korean leader Jang song Taek, who held a key position in the party hierarchy. The Western media also consider the purpose of the meeting as strengthening the status of Kim Jong-UN as the Supreme leader and the rightful heir.

There is a widespread assumption that the Congress will be preceded by another nuclear test as a sign of defiance of the DPRK to the international community, which criticized the recent missile launches and adopted sanctions against Pyongyang. Yet according to recent satellite imagery of North Korean nuclear test site Pangari is not to say that there are reasons for concern. AFP said that the images taken may 2, showed “very low level of activity”.

“Congress quite a long time was not carried out, because Kim Il-sung is not particularly needed – says “MK” leading researcher of the Center for Korean studies, Institute for Far Eastern studies Konstantin Asmolov. – Kim Jong-Il relied, rather, on the army, not the civilian party structure. Kim Jong UN changed the strategy a bit. The Congress will be exactly solved two important issues. First, Kim Jong-Il was declared eternal General Secretary of the party. For this reason it is necessary to change the party Statute. This can only be done by Congress. In addition, a significant part of the older generation, which can be changed only at the Congress, died. This means that it is likely the party cadres waiting for a specific update. Again, they need to change it at the Congress. But what kind of political or economic things will be taken there, it’s quite an interesting question, because here, everyone is biased in the author fantasizes themselves. Normal historian usually says: not enough data”.

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