Research and Analysis on the DPRK Leadership
Kim Jong-il has continued his spate of weekend inspection and concert going activities, according to KCNA. This weekend he conducted an inspection of the Ministry of Public Security headquarters. In his last batch of appearances, General-Secretary Kim attended a concert put on by the MPS musical groups. This is a highly unusual appearance over which I shall offer a meditation when I do a more thorough write-up on General-Secretary Kim’s public appearances this week. Kim Jong-il most recent appearance (Saturday night, presumably) was his attendance at a KPA art performance given by KPA unit 147. Among the tunes performed was a solo number “Soldiers Live Close to the General.” I appreciate that “close” is metaphoric, but if one takes a cursory glance of General-Secretary Kim’s villas one will find Guard Command stations, so soldiers literally live close to the General.
In other news, Xinhua is reporting that Liang Guanglie, China’s Minister of National Defense arrived in Pyongyang on 22 November (Sunday). Minister Liang remarked that he is visiting the DPRK “to forge closer friendly contacts between the armed forces and promote exchange and cooperation between the peoples and armed forces.” He also noted that “the China-DPRK traditional friendship has solidified and developed and shown enormous vigor and vitality.” Minister Liang is being hosted by NDC Vice Chair and Minister of the PAF VMAR Kim Yong-chun.
He attended a greeting ceremony and ceremonial troop review at the Monument to Victorious Fatherland Liberation (Korean) War which was also attended by Chinese diplomatic personnel and Chinese students studying in the DPRK, as well as Vice Minister of the PAF Gen. Pak Chae-kyong, Deputy Director of the GPB Gen. Sim Sang-tae and Deputy Chief of the KPA General Staff, Lt. Gen. Ri Su-hak. Minister Liang’s trip was invited during GPB Senior Deputy Director Gen. Kim Jong-gak’s trip to Beijing last week.