Research and Analysis on the DPRK Leadership
Chinese Vice President Li Yuanchao and a PRC delegation arrived in Pyongyang on 25 July (Thursday) to attend events commemorating the 60th anniversary of the end of active hostilities of the Fatherland Liberation War (Korean War). The PRC delegation, according to KCNA, includes “Zhang Yesui, executive vice-minister of Foreign Affairs, Jia Tingan, deputy director of the General Political Department of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, Liu Hongcai, Chinese ambassador to the DPRK, Chen Fengxiang, deputy head of the International Liaison Department of the Central Committee of the CPC, Bing Zhigang, vice-governor of the Liaoning Provincial People’s Government, Chen Weigen, vice-governor of the Jilin Provincial People’s Government and others.” Vice President Li’s was greeted at Pyongyang Airport by Supreme People’s Assembly [SPA] Presidium Vice President Yang Hyong Hop, Korean Workers’ Party [KWP] International Affairs Department Deputy Director Kim Song Nam, Lt. Gen. Ryom Chol Song, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Kim Hyong Jun, DPRK Ambassador to China Ji Jae Ryong, along with other relevant DPRK officials and staff members of the PRC Embassy in Pyongyang. Li received a floral bouquet after disembarking and reviewed a Korean People’s Army [KPA] honor guard.
Li Yuanchao and the PRC delegation met with SPA Presidium President Kim Yong Nam at Mansudae Assembly Hall in central Pyongyang. Attending the meeting from the DPRK were Kim Song Nam, LTG Ryom Chol Song, Kim Hyong Jun and Ji Jae Ryong. Kim Yong Nam “had a friendly talk with the delegation.” According to KCNA Li Yuanchao said “he was deeply moved by warm welcome of the Korean people,” that the PRC delegation “was pleased that the delegation is attending the celebrations of the 60th anniversary of the victory in the Korean war upon the authorization of the Chinese party and government” and that “stressed that the Sino-DPRK relations are the ones sealed in blood.” Li also said “When the DPRK faced grim ordeals on this land, the Chinese people fought shoulder to shoulder with the Korean people and won a victory. We can never allow the dark cloud of a war to hang in the sky above this land again.” According to KCNA, Li Yuanchao also remarked that “the Sino-DPRK friendship is a precious asset bequeathed by the leaders of the elder generation of the two countries” and expressed “belief that the friendly relations would steadily grow strong in the spirit of inheriting the tradition, facing up to the future, building good-neighborly friendship and boosting cooperation.”
Li Yuanchao and the PRC delegation held a separate meeting with SPA Presidium Vice President Yang Hyong Sop which consisted of “a friendly talk.” Yang Hyong Sop presided over a reception for Vice President Li held at Mansudae Assembly Hall. Also attending the reception were KWP Secretary and Director of the International Affairs Department Kim Yong Il, Minister of Foreign Affairs Pak Ui Chun, DPRK Ambassador to the PRC Ji Jae Ryong, other DPRK officials and personnel from the PRC Embassy in Pyongyang. According to KCNA Yang Hyong Sop said in his welcome speech that “it is an important occasion of fully demonstrating the solidity of the traditional DPRK-China friendship before the world to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the victory in the war together with close Chinese comrades” and Yang noted “the heroic feats of the Chinese People’s Volunteers left in the mountains and fields in Korea will shine long and the Korean people will never forget the history in which they fought bloody battles in the same trench with the Chinese people though 60 years have passed since the war victory day.” Yang also “expressed belief that the DPRK-China friendship would grow stronger with the concerted efforts of both sides.” Li Yuanchao, according to KCNA, said “to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the victory in the war together with the Korean people is to look back upon the past days, face up to the future, defend peace and security and make progress” and that “both sides should steadily strengthen exchange and cooperation in various fields and thus promote good-neighborly relations and boost cooperation between the two countries.” Li “expressed belief that the Sino-DPRK relations would contribute to ensuring regional and global peace and stability and bring more wellbeing to the peoples of the two countries under the deep attentions of their leaders.”
Two other Chinese delegations arrived in Pyongyang on Thursday to participate in anniversary events. Li Xiubao, deputy director of the People’s Liberation Army [PLA] General Political Department’s Publicity Department arrived at the head of a culture and arts delegation. A separate delegation of Chinese People’s Volunteer [CPV] veterans from the Korean War, led by former PLA Air Force commander Yu Zhenwu were greeted with bouquets of flowers and “warmly welcomed” to the country by KPA officers and service members. Greeting the CPV delegation at Pyongyang Airport were SPA Presidium Vice President Yang Hyong Sop, Deputy Director of the KWP International Affairs Department Kim Song Nam, Vice Minister of the People’s Armed Forces Col. Gen. Pyong In Son and PRC Ambassador to the DPRK Liu Hongcai.