North Korea Leadership Watch

Research and Analysis on the DPRK Leadership

DPRK Premier Visits Dental Hospital and Komdok Area Flood Damage

DPRK Premier Choe Yong Rim (3rd L) is briefed about ongoing flood recovery work in the Komdok area in North Hamgyo’ng Province. Also seen in attendance is DPRK Vice Premier and Chairman of the State Planning Commission Ro To Chol (2nd L) (Photo: Rodong Sinmun)

DPRK state media reported on 11 September (Tuesday) that DPRK Cabinet Premier Choe Yong Rim visited recovery work in the Komdok area of North Hamgyo’ng Province and the General Dental Hospital in Pyongyang.  Choe’s first visit was to the Ministry of Public Health’s General Dental Hospital in Pyongyang.  The dental hospital was opened in April 2010.  In August 2011, according to KCNA, the dental hospital saw the addition of seven new specialty departments.  During his visit, Choe “took measures for updating it.”

Choe Yong Rim, joined by Vice DPRK Cabinet Premier and State Planning Commission Chairman Ro Tu Chol, also visited recovery efforts underway in the Komdok area, approximately 48 km (30 miles) north of Kimch’aek and 97 km (60 miles) south of Ch’o’ngjin, in North Hamgyo’ng Province.  According to a 7 September 2012 report by KCNA the Komdok area “suffered huge damage” to various mining complexes, farmland, roads, railways and telephone lines.  Choe toured damaged areas where he “learned in detail about the recovery operations and living of the inhabitants there before encouraging them.”

After touring the area, Choe convened a meeting with local government and Korean People’s Army [KPA] officials managing reconstruction and recovery.  According to KCNA, “the meeting   discussed issues of bringing the people’s living in the afflicted areas to normal at an early date and matters of restoring destroyed railways and roads [and] underscored the need for all the units including ministries and national institutions to render sincere help in the recovery operations”  Choe’s meeting with local officials also “called for winding up the recovery operations at an early date by the might of the unity of the army and the people and turning the area into a better place, not confined to restoring the afflicted area to its original state.”

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September 2012