US Korea Institute

Friday May 26th 2017
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Posts Tagged ‘leadership’

Under New Management: Shifts in North Korea’s Foreign Ministry and Nuclear Communications

Under New Management: Shifts in North Korea’s Foreign Ministry and Nuclear Communications

With rampant speculation about North Korea conducting another nuclear test in the near future, it is important to examine not only the technical aspects of the September test, but how it was communicated to the North’s allies—China and Russia. As such, it appears that key North Korean officials were dispatched just days before the test, who [...]

The Fourth Session of the 13th SPA: Tweaks at the Top

The Fourth Session of the 13th SPA: Tweaks at the Top

The 4th session of the 13th Supreme People’s Assembly (SPA), the DPRK’s rubber-stamp unicameral legislative body, replaced the country’s supreme power organization at its June 29 meeting. While underscoring the ruling party’s control over state and military affairs and further consolidating Kim Jong Un’s authority, the development [...]

The Death of a Diplomat: Kang Sok Ju

The Death of a Diplomat: Kang Sok Ju

On October 4, 2002, Kang Sok Ju participated in a historically ambiguous but relatively significant official interaction between the US and DPRK governments. At the DPRK Foreign Ministry building in Pyongyang, a delegation led by Assistant Secretary of State James Kelly confronted Kang, who was then North Korea’s First Vice Minister of Foreign [...]

Deciphering the 7th Party Congress: A Teaser for Greater Change?

Deciphering the 7th Party Congress: A Teaser for Greater Change?

From one perspective, the 7th Congress of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK) was a monotonous event, long on rhetoric and short on major policy and personnel changes. No substantive policy announcements took place, and many top officials sat on a rostrum for four days and ultimately kept their jobs. Throughout hours of speeches, Kim Jong Un [...]

The 7th Party Congress in North Korea: A Return to a New Normal

The 7th Party Congress in North Korea: A Return to a New Normal

The single most remarkable thing about the 7th Congress of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK) is that it took place. After a 36-year hiatus, it was, without doubt, a noteworthy event, but the truly big news we were waiting for—such as an announcement of a drastically new economic policy or a switch to collective leadership—was missing. There [...]

Let the Hawks Soar

Let the Hawks Soar

With less than three months left before the 7th Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK) Congress is scheduled to convene in May, Kim Jong Un appears to be appointing hardliners to key national security positions. The growing prominence of these officials—party cadres and military officers who support a more belligerent policy toward the ROK, the United [...]

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