Research and Analysis on the DPRK Leadership
Kim Jong Un’s last observed appearance was his inspection of the test of a multiple-launch rocket system
DPRK state media reported on March 9 (Wednesday) that Kim Jong Un (Kim Cho’ng-u’n) met with scientists, technicians and other personnel involved in the country’s nuclear weapons program and “guided the work for boosting the nuclear arsenal.” Also attending the meeting were General Kim Rak Gyom (Commander of the Korean People’s Army [KPA] Strategic Force), Hong Yong Chil (deputy director of the Workers’ Party of Korea [WPK] Machine-Building [Military] Industry Department), Kim Yo Jong (deputy director of the WPK Propaganda and Agitation Department and Jong Un’s younger sister) and Hong Su’ng Mu (deputy director of the WPK Machine-Building [Military] Industry Department and head of the Nuclear Bureau).
Kim Jong Un was briefed about the “signal successes made by the nuclear scientists and technicians in the field of national defense science in the work for increasing the nuclear arsenal true to the party’s line of founding the Chuch’e-oriented nuclear force” and “research conducted to tip various type tactical and strategic ballistic missiles with nuclear warheads.” He “acquainted himself with the specifications and mechanism of the miniaturized powerful nuclear warheads with a Korean-style structure of mixed charge.”
According to KCNA, Jong Un praised “the nuclear scientists and technicians, trustworthy ‘nuclear combatants,’ of the party for having made a signal success in the national defense scientific researches to significantly bolster up the nation’s defense capability and self-defensive deterrent true to the party’s line of simultaneously developing the two fronts.” He noted that it “is very gratifying to see the nuclear warheads with the structure of mixed charge adequate for prompt thermo-nuclear reaction. The nuclear warheads have been standardized to be fit for ballistic missiles by miniaturizing them…this can be called [a] true nuclear deterrent…Koreans can do anything if they have a will.”
Kim Jong Un said that “being a proud nuclear weapons state at present, we have a firm guarantee for making a breakthrough in the drive for economic construction and improving the people’s standard of living on the basis of the powerful nuclear deterrent. The WPK’s line of simultaneously developing the two fronts is not a temporary counter-action for coping with the rapidly changing situation, but a strategic line to be permanently held fast to as long as the imperialists’ nuclear threat and arbitrary practices persist.” Jong Un call “on the nuclear scientists, the frontline combatants responsible for the country’s nuclear deterrent to creditably perform their honorable mission and duty on behalf of the party, the country and the revolution on the first battle line for decisively foiling with a nuclear treasured sows the enemies’ daily escalating reckless moves to stifle the DPRK and glorifying the country as the matchless nuclear power which no force on earth dares to provoke.”
He noted that “our nuclear force’s main mission to deter a nuclear war…the strong our nuclear capability gets, the more powerful our deterrent to aggression and nuclear war grows and it is the most just and reliable way of preventing the country from a nuclear war disaster to firmly bolster up the nuclear force in both quality and quantity. The right to make a preemptive nuclear strike is by no means a monopoly of the US…if the US imperialists infringe upon the DPRK’s sovereignty and right to existence with nuclear weapons, the latter will never hesitate to make a preemptive strike at them.” Jong Un “expressed great expectation and belief that scientists and technicians in the field of researches into nuclear weapons would develop and produce more Korean-style various type nuclear weapons of Chuch’e to completely contain the enemies with nuclear force and thus provide a firmer guarantee for the eternal future of Kim Il Sung’s (Kim Il-so’ng) nation and Kim Jong Il’s (Kim Cho’ng-il) Korea.”