Research and Analysis on the DPRK Leadership
Pak Myong Chol (Pak Myo’ng-ch’o’l), a former Minister of Physical Culture and Sports and councilor on the National Defense Commission [NDC], made his first reported appearance in DPRK state media since October 2012. Pak attended Kim Jong Un’s (Kim Cho’ng-u’n) visit to the Masik Pass Ski Resort, reported by state media on 31 December (Tuesday), but Pak’s current position was not disclosed. Much of Pak’s four decade career was spent in management position in DPRK sports organization including serving as Vice Chairman and Chairman of the State Physical Culture and Sports Commission, Chairman of the DPRK Olympic Committee and two terms as Minister of Physical Culture and Sports. He also held the high-level position of NDC Councilor from 2009 until 2012. He made his last reported public appearance in October 2012 and there were rumors that he had been purged. Given that his appearance at the Masik Pass Ski Resort prior to its opening and his career history, there is a good possibility that Pak will replace the late Jang Song Taek as Chairman of the State Physical Culture and Sports Commission. Interestingly, Pak Myong Chol had very good relations and political ties with Jang Song Taek. During Jang’s disappearance from 2003 to 2006, Pak was one of dozens officials who was subjected to reeducation.