US Korea Institute

Thursday August 21st 2014
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Domestic Affairs

From politics to economics, from leadership succession to the introduction of fast food restaurants, there is a lot going on inside North Korea.

The Fall of Choe Ryong Hae

The Fall of Choe Ryong Hae

Hwang Pyong So (1) and Choe Ryong Hae (2) with Kim Jong Un on a field guidance trip to a KPA-owned food factory on November 12, 2013. (Photo: KCNA) While speculation has swirled around the status of Vice Marshal Choe Ryong Hae for months, it is now certain that he has been replaced from his key post as Director of the Korean People’s Army’s [...]

The DPRK Political Season: Two Post-Mortems

The DPRK Political Season: Two Post-Mortems

North Korea kicked off its political calendar with a pair of meetings on April 8 and April 9, 2014. Continuing a standard practice of the Kim Il Sung Era, a meeting of the top leadership of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK) Central Committee occurred a day ahead of the opening session of the 13th Supreme People’s Assembly. The Political [...]

The SPA Session of April 2014: Spotlight on Sports and Economic and Trade Zones

The SPA Session of April 2014: Spotlight on Sports and Economic and Trade Zones

The first session of the newly elected 13th Supreme People’s Assembly (SPA, North Korea’s parliament) was fairly mundane without too many big surprises. There were no unexpected changes on the personnel front, the constitution was not amended, no new laws were promulgated, no reform and opening policy was formulated, no new weapons were [...]

Personnel Shifts in the SPA Election: Steady as She Goes

Personnel Shifts in the SPA Election: Steady as She Goes

Click here for a translated list of the SPA Deputies (Members) as a result of the March 9, 2014 election. (List reported in Korean by KCNA; translated by Michael Madden.) The election of the 13th Supreme People’s Assembly on March 9, 2014 did not reveal any major personnel or policy changes in North Korea’s unicameral parliament. With an [...]

Some Thoughts on the North Korean Parliamentary Election of 2014

Some Thoughts on the North Korean Parliamentary Election of 2014

Elections for the 13th Supreme People’s Assembly (SPA), the parliament of North Korea, were held on March 9, 2014. Such elections take place every five years. The last polls, originally scheduled for 2008, were held in 2009, most likely in response to the worsening health condition of then leader Kim Jong Il. The elections in 2003 had been [...]

Game-Changing Agricultural Policies for North Korea?

Game-Changing Agricultural Policies for North Korea?

While there has been periodic speculation since Kim Jong Un took power about his appetite for reform, a recent development may foretell substantial changes for North Korea’s agricultural sector. On February 6-7, 2014, North Korea held its first national conference of farm sub-work team leaders in Pyongyang. The conference was reported by KCNA [...]

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Credit for photo of young North Korean girl: T.M. All rights reserved, used with permission.