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KJU Visits Health Complex

28 Apr
Kim Jong Un (2nd R) and his wife Ri Sol Ju (R) visit a teppanyaki griddle in the restaurant of the Haedanghwa Health Complex in east Pyongyang (Photo: Rodong Sinmun)

Kim Jong Un (2nd R) and his wife Ri Sol Ju (R) visit a teppanyaki griddle in the restaurant of the Haedanghwa Health Complex in east Pyongyang (Photo: Rodong Sinmun)

DPRK state media reported on 27 April (Saturday) that Kim Jong Un (Kim Cho’ng-u’n) visited the recently constructed Haedanghwa Health Complex in Pyongyang.  KJU’s last reported public appearance was his attendance at a banquet commemorating the 81st anniversary of the foundation of the Korean People’s Army [KPA].  He was joined by his wife, Ri Sol Ju (Ri So’l-chu).  Madame Ri’s last reported public appearance was in late February, when she watched a basketball game and attended a banquet with Dennis Rodman.

Also attending the visit were DPRK Cabinet Premier Pak Pong Ju,  VMar Choe Ryong Hae (Director of the KPA General Political Department),  Jang Song Taek (Vice Chairman of the DPRK National Defense Commission [NDC]), Gen. Hyon Yong Chol (Chief of the KPA General Staff), Gen. Kim Kyong Sik (Minister of the People’s Armed Forces), Kim Kyong Hui (KWP Secretary and KJU’s aunt), Kim Ki Nam (KWP Secretary and Director of the Propaganda and Agitation Department), Choe Tae Bok (KWP Secretary and SPA Chairman), Kang Sok Ju (DPRK Cabinet Vice Premier), Kim Yong Il (KWP Secretary and Director of the International Affairs Department),  Kim Yang Gon (KWP Secretary and Director of the United Front Department),  Kim P’yo’ng-hae (KWP Secretary and Director of Cadres’ Affairs), Kwak Pom Gi (KWP Secretary and Director of the Planning and Finance Department), Mun Kyong Dok (Chief Secretary of the Pyongyang City [municipal] KWP Committee), Col. Gen. O Il Jong (Director of the KWP Military Affairs Department), Han Kwang Sang (Deputy Director of the KWP Finance and Accounting Department) Paek Kye Ryong (Director of the KWP Light Industry Department), Kim Kyong Ok (Senior Deputy [first vice] Director of the KWP Organization Guidance Department), Gen. Kim Yong Chol (Chief of the Reconnaissance General Bureau and Vice Chief of the KPA General Staff) and Jon Il Chun (Deputy Director of the KWP Finance and Accounting Department), among others.

Kim Jong Un began his visit at Haedanghwa Health Complex’s basement garage.  According to KCNA, KJU “was pleased to see the completed complex, adding that he appreciated its design and construction after examining the information on it presented to him by the relevant field.”  He also visited the store and dining rooms on the complex’s first two levels.  He “highly praised the builders for constructing not only the shop but the dining rooms to suit their nature and meet the requirements of formative art,” according to KCNA.  KJU visited the restaurant where he remarked that “cooking is a science and art, [he urged] the cookers to steadily improve their skills and display creative ingenuity to serve customers with varieties of tasty and highly nutritive dishes” and had a commemorative photograph taken with the chefs.  KJU then went to the second and third levels of the Haedanghwa Health Complex where he visited the public baths, saunas a barber shop, hair salon skin treatment center, workout room, billiard room and other recreational facilities.  KCNA reported that Kim Jong Un “personally checked the temperature of water at the bath and learnt about service provided at a face treatment room” and “was pleased to see the wading pool. He was also pleased to go round various saunas built with peculiar building materials such as halite, agate and yellow earth.”  KJU also “learnt in detail about what kinds of sports apparatuses are there in the fitness hall and table-tennis hall” and whilst “watching the clock in the shape of billiard balls and billiard table on a wall of the billiard room, he praised the builders for having constructed the room in such a perfect manner that everything there is impeccable.”

KJU then visited the health complex’s e-library and, according to KCNA, said “a relevant field should systematically send various data and videos on cooking to the e-reading room” and he “stressed the need to supply a sufficient quantity of foodstuff necessary for cooking practice so that apprentices may acquire workable knowledge, saying that theory is not enough to acquire cooking skill.”  He also visited a coffee shop on the complex’s fifth floor.  According to KCNA Kim Jong Un said that “it is the firm resolution of the WPK to enable the Korean people, the best in the world, to fully enjoy wealth and glory under socialism, without tightening their belts again, he noted, underlining the need to build more modern service centers such as the Haedanghwa Health Complex impeccable in any aspect.”

4th Meeting of Party Cell Secretaries Closes

31 Jan
Kim Jong Un spekas during the last day of the 4th Meeting Party Cell Secretaries on 29 January 2013 in Pyongyang (Photo: Rodong Sinmun)

Kim Jong Un spekas during the last day of the 4th Meeting Party Cell Secretaries on 29 January 2013 in Pyongyang (Photo: Rodong Sinmun)

DPRK state media reported on 29 January (Tuesday) that the 4th Meeting of Party Cell Secretaries closed.  Kim Jong Un and other members of the central leadership attended.  KJU’s last reported public appearance was at the opening day of the party cell secretaries meeting.  KCNA reported that speakers on the second day of the meeting “were unanimous in praising the leadership feats of the peerlessly great persons of Mt. Paektu associated with their fields and units, and analyzed and reviewed achievements, experience and defects in their party work in the past” and “made pledges to glorify generation after generation the great Generalissimos Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il’s idea on party-building and their feats, bring about an epochal turn in the party work under the leadership of the dear respected Kim Jong Un and thus contribute to turning the party into an unbreakable integral whole with firm center of leadership and unity, a genuine mother party that is linked with the people through one blood vessel and a guiding force that leads the building of a thriving nation.”

During their visit to Pyongyang, according to KCNA, party cell secretaries visited the Ministry of the People’s Armed Forces, celebrated their birthdays with a banquet and performance and visited textile mills.

Speakers on the second day of the conference included:

  • Jo Jong Suk, secretary of the party cell of the Management Station of Revolutionary Battle Site of Mt. Paektu
  • Yun Yong Bok, secretary of the party cell of the Ministry of Physical Culture and Sports
  • Yun In Dok, secretary of the party cell of North Hamgyong Provincial People’s Hospital
  • Jang Myong Sok, chief secretary of the Sinchon County Party Committee
  • Ri Man Gon, chief secretary of the North Phyongan Provincial Committee of the WPK
  • Jong U Yong, secretary of the party cell of the Fourth Shop of the Pukchang Thermal Power Complex
  • Yom Yong Gil, secretary of the branch party committee of the Tools Shop of the Pyongyang Textile Machine Factory
  • Jong Kwang Bok, secretary of the party cell of the Rodong Sinmun

Kim Jong Un delivered a keynote address at the meeting.  There were no nuclear invocations or martial rhetoric, but his remarks were a direct attack on corrupt mid-level party and government officials.    His full speech, according to KCNA:

I think that the report to the Conference and speeches have properly reviewed the achievements, experiences and shortcomings in the work of Party cells of the past and I would like to refer to some problems arising in enhancing the functions and role of Party cells drastically in line with the requirements of our Party and the developing revolution.

Comrades, At present our revolution has entered a new turning phase.

Our Party, army and people have been united more closely under the immortal flags bearing the beaming images of President Kim Il Sung and General Kim Jong Il and are advancing straight along the road of independence, the road of Songun and the road of socialism true to their instructions.

We have firmly had in our hands the powerful assets and the key with which to win a greater victory by having steadily defended the precious revolutionary legacies the General bequeathed to us and adding brilliance to them despite trying ordeals and hardships.

In particular, the successful launch of artificial earth satellite Kwangmyo’ngso’ng 3-2 last year was a historic event that demonstrated the inexhaustible power of the powerful Mt. Paektu nation to the whole world and a mega event that dealt a crushing blow to hostile forces trying viciously to stifle our Republic.

Now we have taken the initiative more firmly in the face-off with the imperialists and it is a matter of time to bring about a turn in the building of an economic giant and the standard of the people’s living.

We should effect a radical turn in the economic construction and the people’s livelihoods in the spirit and mettle displayed in conquering outer space and fly the red flag of victory on the peak of a thriving socialist country.

To step up the building of a thriving country, we should further strengthen the Party, the general staff and guiding force of the revolution, organizationally and ideologically, rally all the people around it closely and mobilize them effectively to carry out its policies.

It is the nature and the traditional revolutionary mode of the great party of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il that the entire Party is bound together with a single ideology and purpose and the Party and people are pushing the revolution and construction in a harmonious whole.

The President and the General developed our Party into an invincible party in which the monolithic ideological system and the monolithic leadership system have been established firmly and which has taken root deep among the people and set up a prosperous and strong socialist country by relying on the revolutionary enthusiasm and creative strength of the people united rock-hard around the Party.

The red flag of our Party in which only victory and glory have been etched and the socialist gains achieved on this land are associated with the proud history of single-hearted unity in which the leader believed in the Party members and people and the Party members and people trusted him absolutely and supported him with loyalty.

We should take the undying exploits performed by the President and the General in Party building as an eternal treasure so as to further develop our Party into a powerful, militant general staff that is knitted closely together in a single ideology and purpose and takes root deep among the people and surely build the strongest country, the people’s paradise the world looks up to, on this land on the strength of the Party-people harmonious whole.

The position and role of Party cells are very important in strengthening our Party further and speeding up the building of a thriving country in line with the requirements of a new era of the Juche-based revolution.

Party cell is a base of the Party life for the Party members, the Party’s end nerve stretched out into the masses of the people and a scouting group in carrying out the Party’s policies.

When Party cells are strong the Party will never shake in any adversity and there will be nothing we are afraid of or we can not do.

As the consolidation of Party cells is the first step and the essential thing for strengthening the whole Party, the Party Central Committee has convened the Conference of Cell Secretaries as the first meeting for improving Party work since the Fourth Conference of the Workers’ Party of Korea and regards this Conference as important as a Party congress and conference.

In order to make the Fourth Conference of Cell Secretaries of the Workers’ Party of Korea a turning point in enhancing the Party’s militant might in every way and stepping up the building of a thriving country, the participants in the Conference and the cell secretaries of the whole Party should understand the Party’s intention clearly and improve the work of Party cells radically.

The most important task facing Party cells at present is to prepare the Party members as genuine Kimilsungists-Kimjongilists and true comrades and comrades-in-arms of our Party.

Preparing all the Party members as genuine Kimilsungists-Kimjongilists is a prerequisite and decisive guarantee for developing ours into the eternal party of the President and the General and winning the final victory in the building of a thriving country and the Juche-based revolution.

Kimilsungist-Kimjongilist means the soldier and follower loyal to the President and the General, who takes Kimilsungism-Kimjongilism as his firm faith and devotes his all to victory in the Juche- based revolution under the leadership of our Party.

Party cells should hold it as the main task to prepare the Party members as genuine Kimilsungists-Kimjongilists and provide scrupulous guidance to their organizational and ideological life in the Party.

They should undertake education in Kimilsungism-Kimjongilism substantially among the Party members so as to train them soundly into ardent revolutionary fighters who are thoroughly armed with the Juche idea and the Songun idea of our Party and are equipped with the spirit of safeguarding the leadership of the revolution at the cost of their lives, firm faith in socialism and steadfast class consciousness against imperialism.

Stalwart members of the Society for Rallying Comrades, the first organization of our Party, are the exemplars from whom all the Party members should learn.

Party cells should conduct education energetically so that all the Party members venerate the Party and the leader with absolute faith and pure conscience like our Party’s first-generation members including Cha Kwang Su and Kim Hyok and carry forward the tradition of single- hearted unity steadily.

A habit of leading a voluntary Party life on the basis of a high sense of organizational duty should be established in Party cells and the Party members should be trained in the furnace of the Party’s organizational life so that they become stout revolutionaries with boundless loyalty to the Party, leader, country and people and a strong sense of organization and discipline.

Particular attention should be paid to implanting the Party members with love for the people and spirit of serving them devotedly in preparing them as true Kimilsungists-Kimjongilists.

Kimilsungism-Kimjongilism is, in essence, the people-first doctrine and a person who worships the people as God and works devotedly for them is just a genuine Kimilsungist-Kimjongilist.

It is the firm determination of our Party to respect our people and devote everything to them as we hold the President and the General in high esteem.

The slogan “Everything for the people and everything by relying on them!” contains the Party’s will to fill the whole Party with love for and trust in the people.

All the officials and Party members should be genuine comrades and comrades-in-arms who steadily follow, together with our Party, the road of l ove for the people the President and the General had taken throughout their lives.

Party cells should implant their noble outlook on the people deep in the officials and Party members to make them serve and love the people like their parents, wives and children.

The Party cells to which officials belong, in particular, should take it as an important task to prepare them as the true servants of the people and enhance guidance over and control of their Party life.

From the very beginning after he founded our Party the President saw the abuse of power and bureaucratic practices manifested among officials as the most dangerous poison a working- class ruling party should guard against and ensured that a consistent struggle was waged against them.

The General put forward the slogan “We serve the people!” and devoted energy and soul to developing our Party into a motherly party serving the people faithfully, not a party that indulges in power abuse and bureaucracy.

However, whenever the Party underlined the need to eliminate the abuse of power and bureaucratic practices, Party organizations simply called meetings for criticizing ideological defects and punished some officials.

Then they did not make persevering efforts to transform officials on a revolutionary pattern.

Abuse of power and bureaucracy are not merely a matter of personal character or work style of officials, but a matter of their ideology.

When they abuse their power and work in a bureaucratic manner, officials will not merely lose their popularity among the masses and get a blot on their political integrity, but impair the Party’s authority and the prestige of socialism, which will end up leading the revolution and construction to ruin.

Today when the enemy is resorting to more vicious schemes to undermine the single-hearted unity between our Party and people, those who abuse their power and work in a bureaucratic manner are the major targets of criticism, those whom our Party should punish resolutely.

The Party Central Committee is firmly determined not simply to weed out but to root out the abuse of power and bureaucratic practices that are like the poisonous weeds sprouting on the garden of socialism centred on the masses of the people.

The campaign against power abuse and bureaucracy is a Party-wide undertaking in which all Party organizations and their members should turn out.

In order to eliminate the abuse of power and bureaucratic practices officials and cell secretaries should try hard to train themselves in a revolutionary way, and Party cells, to say nothing of the Party Central Committee, provincial, city and county Party committees and their primary organizations, should wage an intensive, principled struggle against power abuse and bureaucracy.

There are ranks in work, but there can never be members of high or low rank in the Party life and the double standards of discipline are never allowed in the Party.

Party cells should create a strict atmosphere of criticism and ideological campaign and intensify criticism from bottom up in particular to give comradely help to officials to eliminate the abuse of power and bureaucratic practices and prepare themselves as the true servants of the people.

Party cells should clearly distinguish between demands of officials and bureaucracy.

When abuse of power and bureaucratic practices are manifested among officials even in the slightest degree, they should not neglect them but wage a struggle against them promptly.

All Party cells should not be indifferent to the abuse of power and bureaucratic practices of the officials who do not belong to them but actively struggle against them; as for serious cases, they should report on them to higher Party organizations, including the Party Central Committee, before it is too late.

Another important task facing Party cells at present is to work with the masses properly so that broad segments of people establish a firm bond of kinship with our Party.

The masses are the grass-roots foothold the Party relies on and the eternal companions with whom our Party should share the destiny until the final victory will have been won in the revolution.

If the Party loses their support and trust it will lose its grass-roots basis, fail to fulfil its militant mission and in the end become unable to maintain its own existence.

If we are to defend socialism and build a thriving country amid the fierce showdown with the enemy and reunify the country, we should fully grasp the public sentiments and win over as many people as possible through efficient work with them.

As rallying broad masses of people around the Party is an important issue decisive of the destiny of the Party and revolution, an amnesty was proclaimed last year in the run-up to the 100th birthday of the President and the 70th birthday of the General.

It was ensured that most of the participants in the celebrations of the 66th anniversary of the Korean Children’s Union were the children of ordinary workers, farmers, service personnel and intellectuals, rather than those of cadres, and the children of those who committed offences against the country were not discriminated in being chosen as delegates if they were exemplary in study and organizational life of the Children’s Union.

The embrace that cares more for sick and wounded children, gives them love and affection, cures their sour wounds, helps them up and puts them forward again, instead of blaming them this is the embrace of our motherly Party.

We should train all the people to be strong in ideology and faith with great force produced by the motherly Party’s love and trust that are more powerful than nuclear weapons, thereby building rings of fortresses around the Party Central Committee.

All Party cells should work with the masses properly in keeping with our Party’s benevolent politics and all-embracing politics so that they shout “Long live the Workers’ Party!” even though they are left alone in out-of-the-way mountains.

Only then will all the people fight for the Party, the revolution and the country at the risk of their lives in a do-or-die war.

In order to conduct work with the masses effectively in line with the Party’s intention Party cells should assess the people properly in the interests of the revolution.

People have emotions and express their feelings differently according to their characters.

Party cells, guided by the General’s saying that they should know the real minds of people even though they do not know what there is in the fathomless water, should read the innermost thoughts of people and make an unbiased assessment of them.

They should not only stick to collective education but channel great efforts into individual education in educating the masses.

Party work, work with the masses, cannot be conducted with any formula or a single solution.

It is imperative to study appropriate methods of educating people of different characters and apply them to practice so as to make even one more person support the Party.

We should not indiscriminately discard people, even though they are unwilling to accept the Party’s ideas.

If so, it will result in a gradual decrease in the number of the people to be rallied around the Party.

Party cells should not cram the Party’s ideas into the heads of the masses, but educate them persuasively and perseveringly so that they would willingly accept the Party’s ideas.

It is very important to place trust in the people in winning over the masses. Political trust is followed by loyalty, but distrust produces betrayal.

As he is not a Buddhist image made of stone, man may make mistakes in his work and life and even commit unforgivable crimes.

No matter what serious mistakes or crimes he may make, and even though we find in him 99 per cent of demerits and only one per cent of merit or conscience, we should value his conscience, boldly t rust him and lead him to start with a clean slate.

People who have deep-seated mental agonies should be treated more kind-heartedly and particular attention should be paid to freeing them from worries lingering in their minds.

Only then can all the people be developed into indefatigable fighters who will only trust and follow our Party in any adversity, just like white gem that preserves its colour even if it is broken into pieces and bamboo that keeps its straightness even if it is burnt.

Our Party expects that all Party cells will become the blood vessels that link broad masses of the people with the Party with a feeling of kinship and the stones supporting the fortress of single-hearted unity.

Today when the general advance for building a thriving socialist country is gaining momentum, an important task facing Party cells is to actively mobilize the Party members and other working people to carry out the Party’s policies.

The most important revolutionary task facing our Party at present is to translate into brilliant reality the lofty wish of the General who continued super-intensity forced march energetically until the last moment of his life to bring all the benefits of socialism to our people.

In order to bring about a radical turn in the building of an economic giant and the standard of the people’s living, the Party organizations at all levels, Party cells in particular, should creditably play a role of the death-defying corps and scouting group in implementing the Party’s policies.

A Party cell that fails to work efficiently to carry out the Party’s policies cannot be said to be a living Party cell.

At present a great emphasis is put on establishing the monolithic leadership system in the entire Party more thoroughly; whether the Party’s monolithic leadership system is established finds concentrated expression in how the Party’s policies are implemented.

At present not a few Party cells are conducting their work in such a way as to transmit the Party’s policies and instructions to the people and exhort them to turn out for their implementation.

Then the Party’s policies, however correct they may be, cannot be carried out properly and the people’s livelihoods can never be improved.

Party cells should carry out the Party’s policies perseveringly till they pay off in the people’s livelihoods.

Now our officials hold that in order to ensure the Party’s authority it is important to publish a lot of books and intensify information work.

However, the Party’s leadership authority is not ensured by means of texts or words; it is possible only when the Party’s policies are carried out in a thoroughgoing way and people enjoy subsequent benefits.

Party cells should inspire all the Party members and officials to be a valuable foundation for translating the Party’s policies into reality with an unusual determination to sweat blood to improve the people’s living standards.

They should resolutely overcome the tendency to work like a flash in the pan in implementing the Party’s policies and carry them through to the end with unfailing efforts so that our Party’s policies prove to be effective in the people’s livelihoods.

To be the death-defying corps and scouting group in implementing the Party’s policies, Party cells should conduct organizational and political work in a progressive manner to raise a hot wind of Kim Jong Il’s patriotism to the full.

When the hearts of the people are beating vigorously with patriotism of the General who had burnt himself up like a candle for the sake of the country, there will be no difficulty we cannot surmount, nor will there be any fortress we cannot conquer.

Party cells should encourage the Party members and other working people to cherish Kim Jong Il’s patriotism in their minds and devote their heart and soul to carrying out the Party’s lines and policies, holding dear every stone and every blade of grass on this land and warming them up with their blood.

Today our Party requires creating a new spirit of the times advancing towards the world by restoring the fighting spirit in the 1970s when the drum of revolution resounded.

The creators of the spirit of the present times should naturally be produced among the officials and Party members who are the commanding personnel and vanguard fighters of the revolution.

When all the officials and Party members become a locomotive and a scout who plough their way through virgin snow in the van of their sectors and units, like those of the 1970s who had ushered in a heyday in the era of the Workers’ Party under the leadership of the General, leaps and innovations will be made in all posts and the overall affairs of the country will go smoothly.

The Party’s lines and policies can be implemented successfully when all the masses as well as Party members turn out.

Party cells should enlist Party members and the hardcore of the masses to make one person rouse ten others and ten a hundred again, and an innovation in a unit lead on to innovations in other units.

They should bring about a great innovation, a great leap forward racing against time on all fronts of building a socialist economic giant and a civilized nation by dynamically mobilizing workers, farmers, intellectuals and all other sections of people in carrying out the Party’s policies.

Special efforts should be channelled into work with young people in organizing and mobilizing the masses in implementing the Party’s policies.

Young people are vanguard fighters who have taken the lead in supporting the Party and leader in each period and stage of our revolution.

It was none other than young people who lit the torch of the great Chollima upsurge by exerting themselves with patriotism at the furnaces in Kangson in the postwar days and who wrought miracles in the Haeju-Hasong railway project.

Party cells should put forward the young people of new generation and lead them to give fullest play to their resources and gallantry to perform epoch-making heroic exploits in every field of building a thriving nation as their fathers and mothers did in their youth.

This is an age of science and technology, the age of knowledge-based economy, and the building of a prosperous country and its future are inconceivable apart from science and technology.

Party cells should render positive encouragement and sustaining assistance to scientists and technicians so that they raise the hot wind of breaking through the cutting edge as the space scientists who conquered space did.

And they should provide scrupulous Party guidance to ensure that officials, Party members and other working people find out a key to self-reliance and increased production in science and technology and that they try hard to learn advanced science and technology and solve all problems on the strength of science and technology.

By so doing, they should fan the flames of the industrial revolution in the new century and the campaign for breaking through the cutting edge, which the great General kindled, more fiercely in all sectors and units.

Cell secretaries should enhance their sense of responsibility and role in order for Party cells to discharge the heavy mission and duty they assume on behalf of the times and the revolution.

The combat efficiency of Party cells largely depends on the preparedness and role of cell secretaries.

Party cell secretaries are the point men of our Party in building it up and implementing its lines and policies.

When the cell secretaries of the whole Party become the standard-bearers of the revolution and struggle and discharge their responsibilities, Party cells will be consolidated and our revolution advance faster that much.

If Party cell secretaries are to fulfil their duty, they should be like the mother of a family.

The essence of the work of Party cell secretaries is to arouse people through efficient political work to move their hearts .

To this end, they should devote all their sincerity as mothers do to their children.

There is an impressive passage in song “The Voice of the Mother” which goes that although the voice of a mother is heard only in a family, the voice of the Party reverberates throughout the country; it is none other than cell secretaries who should ensure that the voice of the motherly Party full of love and trust resounds throughout the country.

Reflecting themselves on the song, all our cell secretaries should get closer to the minds of people like the mother of a family and rally them firmly behind the Party.

If they are to be like mothers, they should be so warm-hearted and broad-minded that everybody is willing to come to them and unbosom himself or herself.

They should always rack their brains over how to lead people along the right track and add glory to their political integrity.

They should think about the problems of their comrades and the masses before their own family affairs and devote themselves entirely to the collective as mothers would dedicate their blood, flesh and even their lives unhesitatingly to their children.

Always looking up to the beaming images of the President and the General in their minds, cell secretaries should treat people tenderly and warmly with motherly affectionate eyes, bright expression and polite manner.

Only then will people gather around them as honey bees swarm around fragrant flowers and an amicable atmosphere pervade the collective.

If they are to fulfil their duty with credit, Party cell secretaries should set examples for the masses in carrying out the revolutionary tasks.

If they put their backs into difficult tasks ahead of others and make tireless efforts to implement the Party’s policies, this is a political work more powerful than hundreds of words.

Those who take on the most dangerous and difficult undertaking ahead of others and make a breakthrough in the advance like Kim Kum Su, a former Party cell secretary of the explosive disposal squad under the Kangwon Provincial People’s Security Bureau, are genuine cell secretaries required by our Party.

Cell secretaries should not merely call upon Party members and other working people to turn out in implementing the Party’s policies but lead the masses to the struggle and exploits by setting practical examples.

If they are devoted to the Party and the revolution in the van of the masses they may rest or sleep less than others, but they should regard it as comfort, not as toil.

To fulfil their responsibilities and role, Party cell secretaries should improve their political and practical qualifications.

If they are poorly qualified, they cannot work skillfully with people and arouse them forcefully to the implementation of the Party’s policies, however great their determination and enthusiasm may be.

Cell secretaries should not try to have a say on the strength of the Party’s authority or their position but secure authority in work and trust of the masses by means of their practical abilities.

They should make an in-depth study of the works of the President and the General and Party documents to have better knowledge of the Party’s ideas, lines and policies than anybody else and get familiar with the instructions of the President and the General and the Party’s policies which are related to their sectors and units and Party work, in particular.

By making a substantial study of Party Rules and the standards of Party life they should be well acquainted with all practical matters as to the work of Party cells including the organization and guidance of Party life and the expansion of Party membership.

They should have many-sided knowledge of different fields such as politics, the military, the economy and culture and be well-informed about the situation at home and abroad.

The capability to correctly read people’s minds and move their hearts is an indispensable qualification of cell secretaries.

They should acquire proficient methods of working with the masses and be persons of versatile talents who know how to dance, sing and make a motivational speech in front of the masses.

In order to enhance the militant functions and role of Party cells as required by the developing times and revolution, it is necessary to establish the climate of attaching importance and giving positive help to them throughout the Party.

Party committees at all levels should pay close attention to building up the ranks of cell secretaries with those who are politically and ideologically staunch, popular among Party members and practically prepared and improving their qualifications.

They should transmit and disseminate Party documents and policies to cell secretaries in time, regularly inform them of the decisions and directives of higher Party organizations for their implementation and specify correct orientation of work.

In the guidance of lower organizations, Party committees at all levels should fully meet the Party’s demands that officials help and teach cell secretaries, while going down to Party cells and giving guidance to the Party life of their members.

It is also necessary to run the day of Party cell secretaries efficiently on a regular basis and widely organize short courses, discussions about experiences and the like.

For the present, the short course to be given in the wake of this Conference should be organized properly so as to give a substantial help to cell secretaries in their work.

Party cell secretaries assume heavy responsibilities and duties in the efforts to develop our Party into the glorious party of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il and expedite the building of a thriving nation.

The Party Central Committee firmly believes that all the Party cell secretaries and Party officials will creditably fulfil the honourable mission and duty they assume on behalf of the Party and revolution, fully aware that they themselves hold the flag of the Chuch’e-oriented Party.

After his speech, according to KCNA, meeting participants “extended greatest glory and warmest thanks to Kim Jong Un, who has further strengthened the WPK shining with the august names and feats of the great Generalissimos, remarkably enhanced its leadership role and thus provided the undying important programme to effect a great swing in the revolution and construction” and that “letter of pledge to the WPK was adopted at the conference.”

Kim Jong Un then delivered a closing speech in which he said “the Fourth Conference of Cell Secretaries of the Workers’ Party of Korea will be etched in the history of our Party as the one that marks a milestone in strengthening the militant might of the Party to the maximum as required by a new historic age in the accomplishment of the revolutionary cause of Juche and achieving the final victory in the building of a thriving nation” and “The revolutionary ideas of the great Comrades Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il are a science, and doing things as told by them leads to a sure victory in whatever difficulties and trials. This is the truth proved by our revolutionary practice.”  According to KCNA Kim Jong Un also said “the participants in the Conference and other cell secretaries of the whole Party should bear in their minds the spirit of the Conference and fully apply them to their work, so as to give fullest play to the vitality of the Conference in the reality of the gigantic struggle to build a thriving country” and “Fully convinced that all the participants in the Conference and other cell secretaries of the whole Party will discharge their revolutionary duties in the sacred struggle for bringing earlier the prosperous future, firmly rallied around the Party Central Committee, Kim Jong Un declared the Fourth Conference of Cell Secretaries of the WPK closed. “

4th Party Cell Secretaries Meeting Opens with KJU Address

29 Jan
View of the rostrum of the 4th Meeting of Korean Workers' Party Cell Secretaries in Pyongyang on 28 January 2013 (Photo: Rodong Sinmun)

View of the rostrum of the 4th Meeting of Korean Workers’ Party Cell Secretaries in Pyongyang on 28 January 2013 (Photo: Rodong Sinmun)

DPRK state media reported on 28 January (Monday) that Fourth Meeting of [Korean Workers'] Party Cell Secretaries opened with a major presence of the DPRK central leadership.  Kim Jong Un (Kim Cho’ng-u’n) delivered opening remarks.  KJU’s last reported public appearance was his attendance and participation at a meeting of foreign affairs and security officials.  Attending the opening of the party cell secretaries’ meeting were Kim Yong Nam, Choe Yong Rim, Gen. Choe Ryong Hae, Jang Song Taek, Kim Kyong Hui, Pak To Chun, VMar Kim Yong Chun, Kim Ki Nam and Choe Tae Bok along with other “leading cadres of the party, the state and the army, secretaries of party cells and party cadres here and local areas.”

Graphic of the KWP's Basic Party Organization (Graphic: Michael Madden/NKLW)

Graphic of the KWP’s Basic Party Organization (Graphic: Michael Madden/NKLW)

View of the platform (rostrum) while Kim Jong Un delivers opening remarks at the 4th Meeting of Party Cell Secretaries on 28 January 2013 (Photo: KCNA-Yonhap)

View of the platform (rostrum) while Kim Jong Un delivers opening remarks at the 4th Meeting of Party Cell Secretaries on 28 January 2013 (Photo: KCNA-Yonhap)

Kim Jong Un delivers the opening speech at the Fourth Meeting of Party Cell Secretaries in Pyongyang on 28 January 2013 (Photo: Rodong Sinmun)

Kim Jong Un delivers the opening speech at the Fourth Meeting of Party Cell Secretaries in Pyongyang on 28 January 2013 (Photo: Rodong Sinmun)

According to KCNA the meeting “will discuss the issues of enhancing the function and role of the party cells, the grass-roots organizations of the party and scouts in implementing the party’s policies, to strengthen the whole party, increase the national power of the great Mt. Paektu (Paektusan) nation in every way and powerfully mobilize all service personnel and people to building a thriving country as required by the new era of the Juche revolution and the prevailing situation.”  Before the meeting began, participants had a moment of silence for late DPRK President and founder Kim Il Sung and late supreme leader Kim Jong Il.  KJU then delivered an opening speech.  KCNA provided a translated gist of KJU’s speech:

The meeting of secretaries of cells, the fourth in the glorious history of the WPK, is a significant meeting which was convened at the behest of leader Kim Jong Il, eternal general secretary of the WPK.

Kim Jong Il considered the development of the party cells as a main link and master key to strengthening the whole party, successfully carrying forward President Kim Il Sung’s cause of building a revolutionary party, Kim Jong Il lucidly penetrated into the requirements of the period of historic turn in accomplishing the revolutionary cause of Juche with his brilliant wisdom and rare far-sightedness and gave important teachings on organizing a meeting of secretaries of party cells with an attendance of 10 000 persons in the future so that the secretaries of the cells might contribute large shares to strengthening the party cells.

The current meeting will be an epochal turning point in increasing the party’s capability in every way as required by the new era of the Juche revolution by decisively enhancing the function and role of the party cells.

We are facing tasks to further glorify the eternal revolutionary feats the great Generalissimos Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il performed in their lifetime, holding high the immortal banner of Kimilsungism-Kimjongilism, and give steady continuity to building a thriving country and achieving the cause of national reunification.

In order to successfully carry out the important tasks of the party, it is necessary to change the appearance of the party as a political staff leading the revolution and construction and a mother party sharing life and death with the working popular masses.

The party cells, the grass-roots organizations of the party in strengthening it organizationally and ideologically, consolidating the ties of blood between the party and the people and powerfully mobilizing all service personnel and people to the building of a thriving country and scouts in implementing the party’s policies, have very important duties to perform.

If hundreds of thousands of party cells active in all regions, fields and posts of the country are fully prepared, it will be possible to put fresh spurs to the party work and overall affairs of the state and encourage all service personnel and people to perform world-startling miracles.

When all party cell secretaries unite close around the Central Committee of the WPK and hundreds of thousands of party cells become unshakable cornerstones supporting it and fortresses, the prestige and capability of the party as a leader will remarkably increase and the red flag of the WPK will flutter on the eminence of a thriving nation

The Central Committee of the WPK is determined to make this meeting a decisive occasion of bringing about a great turn in the overall party work by reviewing the successes, experience and defects in the past period and radically improving and strengthening the work of the party cells.

The meeting will satisfactorily carry out its work thanks to great enthusiasm and active participation of the comrades present and thus provide a historic landmark in strengthening and developing the party and building a thriving socialist nation.

After his speech KJU “declared the meeting open.”  Following KJU’s speech, Korean Workers’ Party Secretary of Propaganda and Agitation [publicity and information] Kim Ki Nam delivered the meeting report.  According to KCNA, “the floor was taken by Sin Chol Min, secretary of the party cell of the Hero Group for Defusing Explosives of the Kangwon Provincial People’s Security Bureau, Kwon Ryong Un, secretary of the Primary Party Committee of the research center under the Korean Committee of Space Technology, Hyon Kun Sik, secretary of the party cell of the transport workshop of the Chonggang Mechanization Office of the Tideland Reclamation Complex in North Phyongan Province, Kim Chol Hae, secretary of the party cell of the Migok Cooperative Farm in Sariwon City, Kim Ok Bun, secretary of the party cell of Han Hyon Gyong Secondary School in Sinhung County, Kim Hun, secretary of the party cell of the College of Computer Science of Kim Il Sung University, and others.”  The meeting speakers “renewed their resolution to bring about a radical turn in the work for turning the party cells into unshakable cornerstones propping the WPK and death-defying corps for implementing the party’s line as required by the developing situation.”

Documentary Film on KJU’s Security Orgs Visits During August to November 2012

22 Jan

DPRK state media over the weekend release a documentary film of Kim Jong Un’s visiting Korean People’s Army [KPA] sites, interactions with members of internal security agencies and and attending KPA-based performances and sports events.

The first scenes of the documentary film show Kim Jong Un, joined his wife Ri Sol Ju and senior KPA and party officials visiting the statues of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il on the campus of the Ministry of People’s Armed Forces.

(Photos: KCTV screengrab)

(Photos: KCTV screengrab)

Commemorative photo taken in front of the KIS-KJI statues at the Ministry of the People's Armed Forces.  In this image (L-R): Hwang Pyong So, VMar Kim Jong Gak, Ri Sol Ju, Kim Jong Un, Gen. Choe Ryong Hae and Gen. Hyon Yong Chol (Photo: KCTV screengrab)

Commemorative photo taken in front of the KIS-KJI statues at the Ministry of the People’s Armed Forces. In this image (L-R): Hwang Pyong So, VMar Kim Jong Gak, Ri Sol Ju, Kim Jong Un, Gen. Choe Ryong Hae and Gen. Hyon Yong Chol (Photo: KCTV screengrab)

Kim Jong Un visited the KPA Exhibition of Arms and Equipment, and toured its E-Library.

(Photos: KCTV screengrab)

(Photos: KCTV screengrab)

Kim Jong Un (L) at a computer workstation at the KPA Exhibition of Arms and Equipment E-Library (Photos: KCTV screengrab)

Kim Jong Un (L) at a computer workstation at the KPA Exhibition of Arms and Equipment E-Library (Photos: KCTV screengrab)

Kim Jong Un examines an artillery piece (L) and stands at the entrance of the KPA Exhibition of Arms and Equipment (Photos: KCTV screengrab)

Kim Jong Un examines an artillery piece (L) and stands at the entrance of the KPA Exhibition of Arms and Equipment (Photos: KCTV screengrab)

Kim Jong Un, Ri Sol Ju and members of the central leadership attended a performance by the Korean People’s Internal Security Forces All-Woman Brass Ensemble

(Photos: KCTV screengrab)

(Photos: KCTV screengrab)

(Photos: KCTV screengrab)

(Photos: KCTV screengrab)

After the KPISF all-woman brass ensemble performance, Kim Jong Un talked with members of the central leadership (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

After the KPISF all-woman brass ensemble performance, Kim Jong Un talked with members of the central leadership (Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

KJU, Madame Ri and members of the central leadership attended a performance of the KPA Brass Band .

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Kim Jong Un smokes a cigarette after the KPA Brass Band performance (top) and talking to officials (Photos: KCTV screengrab)

Kim Jong Un smokes a cigarette after the KPA Brass Band performance (top) and talking to officials (Photos: KCTV screengrab)

KJU visits the headquarters of the Ministry of State Security to view the statue of Kim Jong Il.

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Kim Jong Un, Ri Sol Ju and several close aides watch a shooting competition and women’s volleyball game

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Kim Jong Un and a number of senior party and KPA officials visited the equestrian company of KPA Unit #534.  Kim Jong Il visited the unit in November 2008 as he recuperated from his stroke.  During his visit Kim Jong Un instructed that the equestrian grounds be turned over to the management of the State Physical Culture and Sports Commission, so it can be used by DPRK civilians.

(Photos: KCTV screengrab)

(Photos: KCTV screengrab)

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Kim Jong Un visited the Ministry of State Security’s headquarters, where he posed for commemorative photographs with MSS personnel and met senior MSS management.

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

KJU attended a commemorative photograph session with participants at a meeting of local police officials of the Ministry of People’s Security and Korean People’s Internal Security Forces.

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

(Photos: KCTV screengrabs)

Kim Jong Un and DPRK Leadership Ride Horses During Inspection of KPA Equestrian Training Ground (updated)

20 Nov

Kim Jong Un rides at the equestrian company of KPA Unit #534, which he later named the Mirim Equestrian Club. Riding alongside him are Gen. Hyon Yong Chol (L), VMar Choe Ryong Hae (background) and Jang Song Taek (R) (Photo: Rodong Sinmun)

DPRK state media reported on 19 November (Monday) that Kim Jong Un (Kim Cho’ng-u’n) inspected the equestrian company of Korean People’s Army [KPA] Unit #534.  KJU’s last reported public appearance was his attendance at a commemorative photograph session with participants in the 4th National Meeting of Mothers.  At the beginning of his inspection Kim Jong Un saw “training facilities and horses which lined for training, he watched service personnel’s training of horse riding.”

Kim Jong Un shakes hands with a a KPA commander who appears to be Gen. Kim Kyok Sik. Also seen in attendance is VMar Choe Ryong Hae (background, C) (Photo: KCNA)

Kim Jong Un (front row, R) dons a pair of customized Ray Ban sunglasses favored by his father, Kim Jong Il (1941-2011), and mother, Ko Yong Hui (1953-2004), during an inspection of the equestrian company of KPA Unit #534. Also seen in attendance is Jang Song Taek (L). Also seen in attendance in this image behind KJU and JST are: Kim Pyong Hae (L), Pak Pong Ju (back to camera, 2nd L), Kim Kyong Ok (3rd L), Gen. Pak Jae Gyong (3rd R) and VMar Choe Ryong Hae (2nd R) (Photo: KCNA)

Kim Jong Un salutes members of the equestrian company of KPA Unit #534 (Photo: KCNA)

Officers and service members of the equestrian company of KPA Unit #534 (Photo: KCNA)

Jang Song Taek (L) and Kim Jong Un (R) (Photo: KCNA)

At his inspection of this company of KPA Unit #534 KJU was accompanied by his sister Kim Yo Jong (Kim Yo’-cho’ng),  VMar Choe Ryong Hae (Director of the KPA General Political Department [bureau]), Kim Kyong Hui (KWP Secretary and KJU’s aunt), Jang Song Taek (National Defense Commission Vice Chairman and KJU’s uncle), Gen. Hyon Yong Chol (Chief of the KPA General Staff), Kim Ki Nam (KWP Secretary and Director of the Propaganda and Agitation [publicity and information] Department), Gen. Kim Kyok Sik (Vice Chief of the KPA General Staff), Kim Yang Gon (KWP Secretary and Director of the United Front Department), Kim Pyong Hae (KWP Secretary and Director of Cadres’ Affairs), Mun Kyong Dok (Chief Secretary of the Pyongyang Cuty [municipal] KWP Committee), Pak Pong Ju (Director of the KWP Light Industry Department), Han Kwang San (Deputy [vice] Director of the KWP Finance and Accounting Department), Kim Kyong Ok (Senior Deputy [1st Vice] Director of the KWP Organization Guidance Department), Ri Ryong Ha (Senior Deputy [1st Vice] Director of the KWP Organization Guidance Department),  Hwang Pyo’ng-so (Deputy [vice] Director of the KWP Organization Guidance Department), Kim Pyong Ho (Deputy [vice] Director of the KWP Propaganda and Agitation Department), Gen. Choe Pu Il (Vice Chief of the KPA General Staff and Commanding Officer of the KPA Northeast Military District), Col. Gen. Son Chol Ju (KPA Supreme Command), Gen. Pak Jae Gyong (Deputy [Vice] Director of the KPA General Political Department), Lt. Gen. Pak Jong Chon (KPA Supreme Command), Gen. Kim Yong Chol (Director of the NDC Reconnaissance Bureau) and Col. Gen. Jon Chang Bok (Deputy [vice] Director of the KPA General Logistics Department).

Members of the equestrian company of KPA Unit #534 participate in a racing exercise (Photo: KCNA)

Kim Jong Un talks with members of the DPRK leadership about the premises of the equestrian company of KPA Unit #534, which were renamed the Mirim Horse Riding Club. Also seen in attendance is Kim Kyong Ok (L) (Photo: KCNA)

Senior Deputy (1st Vice) Director of the KWP Organization Guidance Department and Member of the KWP Central Military Commission Kim Kyong Ok (L) talks to Kim Jong Un (Photo: KCNA)

According to KCNA “watching their brave training, he was satisfied with the fact that commanding officers and men are possessed of the admirable horsemanship” and KJU “recollected with deep emotion the feats performed by leader Kim Jong Il in guiding the work at this training ground, saying that President Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il were very good at riding horses.”  KJU and members of the DPRK leadership in attendance then rode horses around the premises.  KJU remarked that the equestrian grounds were “fairly good for riding.”  According to KCNA Kim Jong Un said, “If this training ground which was visited by Kim Jong Il several times is rebuilt into a modern ground for horse riding, this will mean better preservation and consolidation of the precious legacy left by him.”  One of these inspections to the equestrian grounds by Kim Jong Il was made in early November 2008, and was one of his first reported public appearances after recuperating from a series of strokes in July and August 2008.

Kim Jong Un on a horse during an inspection of the equestrian company of KPA Unit #534. A member of the Guard Command can be seen in the bacgkround. (Photo: KCNA)

Kim Jong Un rides during a visit to the equestrian company of KPA Unit #534 (Photo: KCNA)

(Photo: KCNA)

KWP Secretary and Political Bureau Member Kim Kyong Hui rides during her nephew’s inspection of the equestrian company of KPA Unit #534 (Photo: KCNA)

Kim Yo Jong, KJU’s younger sister and the niece of Kim Kyong Hui and Jang Song Taek, rides during her brother’s tour of the equestrian grounds. (Photo: KCTV/KCNA screengrab)

NDC Vice Chairman and KWP Administration Department Director, Jang Song Taek, rides during his nephew’s inspection of the equestrian company of KPA Unit #534 (Photo: KCNA)

KJU then named the equestrian ground of KPA Unit #534 the “Mirim Horse Riding Club” and he “called for renovating horse-riding club at an early date and presenting it to the people.”  According to KCNA, Kim Jong Un said:

Horse-riding is a very good exercise helpful for nurturing bravery.  It will help strengthen healthy spirit and physical body conducive to labor and defense.  Regular horse-riding exercises from early years based on education will develop muscles and prevent back ache even after becoming adults.  Horse-riding has caught worldwide interest.  Koreans have been fond of riding horses from the olden times and frequently held competitions on horseback, thus training their body and mind.  When renovated, the horse-riding club will attract lots of working people, youth and students.  The horse-riding will help them train their body and mind and give them pride and joy.  Roller skating wind is raging after the creation of skate parks in different parts of Pyongyang.  The same thing will happen after the creation of horse-riding club.  To promote horse-riding, it is necessary to provide necessary conditions.  It is necessary to arrange horse-riding club and, at the same time, create horse-riding school and teach not only horse-riding but horse breeding and taming.  Breeding healthy horses is important for the well operation of horse-riding club.

KCNA reported that KJU instructed “solving in time problems arising in breeding horses including the provision of fodder,” “called for timely producing horse-riding gears including riding suit” and that he “stressed the need to successfully renovate the club as required by the era of military-first (So’ngun) and provide the Koreans who are the best in the world with the highly civilized living conditions and environment.”

(Photo: KCNA)

VMar Choe Ryong Hae, Director of the KPA General Political Department (bureau), Member of the KWP Political Bureau Presidium and Vice Chairman of the KWP Central Military Commission rides a horse during KJU’s inspection (Photo: KCNA)

Chief of the KPA General Staff, Gen. Hyon Yong Chol, rides a horse during KJU’s inspection of the equestrian grounds (Photo: KCNA)

Chief Secretary of the Pyongyang City (municipal) KWP Committee and KWP Political Bureau Alternate (candidate member) Mun Kyong Dok rides (Photo: KCNA)

KWP Secretary and Director of the United Front Department and KWP Political Bureau Alternate (candidate member) Kim Yang Gon rides (Photo: KCNA)

Director of the KWP Light Industry Department and former DPRK Cabinet Premier Pak Pong Ju rides (Photo: KCNA)

KJU’s inspection may have occurred here in the Mirim area of east Pyongyang (Photo: Google image)

Office #38 Repurposed?

18 Oct

Office #38 in the Korean Workers’ Party #1 Office Complex in central Pyongyang (Photo: Google image)

Kyodo News reported on 18 October (Thursday) that Office #38, a unit of the Korean Workers’ Party [KWP] Finance and Accounting Department which managed some of Kim Jong Il’s cash holdings, was a eliminated as part of a consolidation of the country’s foreign currency-generating activities under the DPRK Cabinet.  Kyodo News reported that “was part of efforts by the leadership of Kim Jong Un to streamline entities that earn foreign currency by conducting economic activity such as trade and development of natural resources” and “the move was also intended to revitalize the economy and improve people’s living standard by increasing the role of the Cabinet.”  Ownership of companies previously part of Office #38 has migrated to the Moranbong Bureau, an entity of the DPRK Cabinet.  According to Kyodo “the management division of a Pyongyang restaurant conducting business in China and Southeast Asia, for example, has been transferred from Office 38, which oversaw transactions involving hotels, restaurants, foreign currency shops and trade to the newly established entity called ‘Moranbong Bureau’ that some say belongs to the Cabinet.”

Office #38 and the KWP Finance and Accounting Department in the Central District of Pyongyang (Photo: Google image)

Overview of the KWP #1 Office Complex in central Pyongyang (Photo: Google image)

Office #38 was formally established under the KWP Central Committee Secretariat’s Finance and Accounting Department in the mid-1980s by the department’s director Ro Myong Gun (No Myo’ng-kun).  It was part of the Third Floor, a group of central party sections (units) and offices which supplied Kim Jong Il with information, money and household items, and linked directly to his Personal Secretariat.  The names Third Floor and Office #38 (i.e., Room 38) derive from their original locations in the KWP Central Committee #1 Office Building (KJI’s headquarters from the 1970s until his death in 2011).

The KWP Central Committee #1 Office Building, which was Kim Jong Il’s headquarters from the mid-1970s until his death in 2011. Office #38 derives its name from the room number in this building where it was previously located (Photo: Google image)

With a staff of accountants, bookkeepers and security guards, it controlled a network of holding companies which owned and operated hotels and restaurants located in the DPRK and other Asian countries, as well as various stores and factories located in the country.  Between 20 and 30% of the revenue generated was turned over in cash (US Dollars, Euros) to Kim Jong Il, who would use it to pay his personal staff or dispense to members of his family, close aides and other senior DPRK officials (as gifts).  Office #38 was the not only central party unit responsible for managing KJI or Kim family financial assets or subsidizing his private life, but it was a key organization with regard to the technical and logistical administration of KJI’s money within the DPRK.  Office #38 personnel also escorted KJI’s fourth wife Ko Yong Hui (Ko Yo’ng-hu’i) and current supreme leader Kim Jong Un (Kim Cho’ng-u’n) when they traveled abroad in the early 1990s, as well as Kim Jong Chol (Kim Cho’ng-ch’o’l) when he visited Singapore in February 2011.

Kim Tong Un (L) and Han Kwang Sang (R) (Photos: KCNA)

Daily management of Office #38 has divided between Kim Tong Un (Kim To’ng-u’n) and Han Kwang Sang.  Previously director of Office #39 (also rumored to have been under a consolidation and migration process), Kim Tong Un was subjected to travel sanctions by the European Union in 2009 and replaced by Jon Il Chun (Cho’n Il-ch’un) in early 2010.  Kim was not dismissed from office, but transferred to Office #38.  In February 2010 Han Kwang Sang was appointed a deputy director of the Finance and Accounting Department, and appeared with Kim Jong Il on a tour of the renovated Hyangsan Hotel.  It is likely Han was brought in to manage the Kim Jong Un portfolio in Office #38 and supervise the transfer of companies under Office #38 to the DPRK Cabinet.  Based on recent DPRK state media activity, neither Kim Tong Un nor Han Kwang Sang, has been dismissed from office.  Migrating most of Office #38’s responsibilities to other party and government entities conforms to a general trend in the organizations of the core leadership.  Since 2009, elements of Office #39, Office #35 (intelligence briefs) and KJI’s Personal Secretariat have been folded into the DPRK Government, the National Defense Commission [NDC] and the Guard Command during the transition from KJI to KJU.

The DPRK has recently started to heavily promote tourism in the country to China and the number of western tourists visiting the DPRK is as high as it has ever been.  Considering that a lot of businesses managed by Office #38 were part of the hospitality and restaurant sector in the DPRK, migrating control and management from Office #38 to the DPRK Cabinet mitigates the sanctimonious contention that traveling to the country “props up the regime.” It is likely these management changes were one factor in the closure of the Pyongyang Restaurant in Amsterdam in September.  It is also possible that these recent changes were one reason** Kim Kyong Hui (who owns several restaurants in and out of the country) did not appear in DPRK state media for a month.

**And also shopping for baby clothes.

 

Kim Jong Un Visits Vegetable Science and Pyongyang Floriculture Institutes

22 Sep

Kim Jong Un (C) tours a greenhouse in the Pyongyang Vegetable Science Institute. Also seen in attendance is Jang Song Taek (R), Vice Chairman of the National Defense Commission and Director of the Korean Workers’ Party Administration Department (Photo: Rodong Sinmun)

DPRK state media reported on 21 September (Friday) that Kim Jong Un (Kim Cho’ng-u’n) visited the Pyongyang Floricultural Institute and the Pyongyang Vegetable Science Institute.  KJU’s last reported public appearance was his attendance of the “Arirang” Mass Games.  At his visit to the research institutes, KJU was accompanied by Jang Song Taek, Kim Ki Nam, Ri Jae Il, Ri Ryong Ha, Pak Tae Song, Kim Pyong Ho and Pak Chun Hong.  Kim Jong Un’s first stop was to the Vegetable Science Institute where he toured greenhouses, laboratories and research facilities.  KCNA reported that during his visit, KJU discussed alternative energy sources (“Only when geothermal, solar heat and wind power energy are widely used for heating greenhouses, is it possible to reduce production cost and ensure profitability in operating them”)  and described the institute as “a sea of greenhouses. . .stressing the need for all provinces to build such greenhouses.”  Before attending a commemorative photo session with the Vegetable Science Institute’s staff he “expressed expectation that the scientists and employees of the institute would achieve great successes in researches and production of vegetables.”

Kim Jong Un examines floral arrangements during a visit to the Pyongyang Floriculture Institute (Photo: Rodong Sinmun)

Kim Jong Un’s second visit was to the Pyongyang Floriculture Institute.  He was briefed about the floricultural institute’s ongoing research and activities.  KCNA reported that KJU “expressed his great satisfaction over the fact that the institute increased its production capacity more than 20 times than that in the past, making it possible to send lots of flowers to the flower shops.”  He toured a greenhouse growing orchids and a manufacturing facility, then attended a photo-op with the institute’s employees.    After telling the floricultural institute’s employees to “import world-famous species of flowers and acclimatize them to the climatic and soil conditions of the country,” KCNA reported that he “underlined the need for the floricultural research field to actively learn from good experience of other countries.”  According to KCNA, Kim Jong Un “extended his thanks to the teaching staff and students of Kim Il Sung University, soldier builders, scientists and employees for their patriotic devotion to the construction of the Pyongyang Vegetable Science Institute and the Pyongyang Floriculture Institute.”

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