Pyongyang revises party rules to highlight importance of powerful defense capabilities - The Korea Times
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Pyongyang revises party rules to highlight importance of powerful defense capabilities

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Members of North Korea's ruling Workers' Party participate in the fifth day of the party's eighth congress in Pyongyang on Jan. 9. Yonhap
Members of North Korea's ruling Workers' Party participate in the fifth day of the party's eighth congress in Pyongyang on Jan. 9. Yonhap

North Korea has clarified the importance of powerful defense capabilities in containing military threats in its revised rules for the ruling Workers' Party, state media reported Sunday.

The revision was adopted at the fifth-day session of the eighth party congress in Pyongyang on Saturday, a day after leader Kim Jong-un defined the United States as the country's "foremost principal enemy" and vowed to bolster its nuclear arsenal, according to the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

"(The preface) clearly clarified that powerful defense capabilities would fundamentally contain military threats and safeguard the stability and peaceful environment of the Korean peninsula," the report said.

The revision reflects the North's "unwavering stance" to establish a lasting peace on the peninsula and advance unification based on strong military power, KCNA said.

Korea Central News Agency reported in July 2019 that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, second from right, checked the country's newly built submarine. Yonhap
Korea Central News Agency reported in July 2019 that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, second from right, checked the country's newly built submarine. Yonhap

Also on Saturday, North Korea reinstated the secretariat system that was scrapped in the previous party congress in 2016.

KCNA said that the ruling party replaced the Executive Policy Council with the Secretariat and changed the chairmen and vice chairmen positions in the party committees into different levels of secretaries.

KCNA said the change was aimed at securing the party's authority as the top political body.

The North also stipulated that the party congresses will now be held every five years with a notice on the event to be made several months earlier.

North Korean intercontinental ballistic missile
North Korean intercontinental ballistic missile "Pukguksong-4A" is being displayed during a North Korean military parade held in Pyongyang on Oct. 10, 2020 to celebrate the 75th anniversary of foundation of the country's ruling Workers' Party. Yonhap

North Korea launched the eighth congress on Tuesday, nearly five years after the seventh was held in May 2016. The seventh session was the first of its kind in 36 years.

With the outside world closely watching for a clue on the North's new policy directions for the next few years, Kim urged Washington to withdraw what it calls a hostile policy toward Pyongyang, saying it will now "approach the U.S. on the principle of answering force with toughness."

Kim's remarks were made just days before U.S. President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration on Jan. 20, which experts see as aimed at pressuring the incoming administration.

KCNA said the congress was to continue with a sixth-day session. (Yonhap)




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