Research and Analysis on the DPRK Leadership
DPRK state media reported on 12 November (Monday) that multiple-launch rocket systems [MLRS] were delivered to Korean People’s Army [KPA] units after a ceremony held in Hamhu’ng, the capital of South Hamgyo’ng Province. The Nyomaeng-ho (lady [tiger]) model MRLS were deployed to the KPA to commemorate the country’s Mothers’ Day (Friday, 16 November) and 4th National Meeting of Mothers. According to KCNA, the MRLS were assembled “through a dynamic good conduct movement of the organizations and members of the Democratic Women’s Union of Korea (DWUK; Korean Democratic Women’s Union) across the country.” The ceremony was held in Hamhu’ng Square and was attended by Chief Secretary of the South Hamgyo’ng Korean Workers’ Party Provincial Committee Tae Jong Su (T’ae Chong-su), Chairman of the South Hamgyo’ng Provincial People’s Committee Jon Kwang Ho and “officials concerned, service persons of the KPA and members of the women’s union.”
Chairwoman of the Democratic Women’s Union of Korea Ro Song Sil delivered the ceremony’s “presentation” speech. Other ceremony participants who spoke “noted that the presentation of the military equipment to the army is an expression of the ardent loyalty and patriotism by the mothers in Military-first (so’ngun) Korea to add glory to the immortal exploits performed by Generalissimos Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il for the army building and to make contributions to powerfully demonstrating the might of the powerful Paektusan revolutionary army,” and “called upon all the women to take active part in diverse mass movements and the do-good-thing movement helpful to the building of an economic power and the improvement of the people’s living standard and make devoted efforts for society and the collective, bearing Kim Jong Il’s patriotism in mind,” according to KCNA. At end of the ceremony, MRLS passed through Hamhu’ng Square “amid warm send-off of women’s union members in Hamhu’ng City. ”
A similar MLRS presentation ceremony was held in Hamhu’ng on 19 April 2012. During that ceremony Sonyon-ho and Nyomaeng-ho models, jointly produced by the women’s union and the Kim Il Sung Youth League, were presented to the KPA. The women’s union staged a similar presentation ceremony of the Nyomaeng-ho MLRS on 22 July 2003 in Pyongyang. At that ceremony, part of commemorations for the 50th anniversary of the end of the Fatherland Liberation War (Korean War), the then-head of the women’s union Pak Sun Hui said in her speech that “that the servicepersons of the People’s Army would effectively use those launch systems associated with the faith and will of the Korean mothers to firmly defend the socialist country and shower the fire of revenge on the intruders into this land.”
It is not clear why two MLRS ceremonies in 2012 have been held in Hamhu’ng. The most plausible reason is that the vehicles’ production process was completed in South Hamgyo’ng Province. A 3 October 2000 ceremony at which DPRK schoolchildren presented 55 Sonyon-model trucks to the KPA was held in To’kch’o’n, South P’yo’ngan Province. To’kch’o’n is the locale for Su’ngri Motor Plant, which produces the Sonyon truck.
Views of the Nyomaeng-ho MLRS