Research and Analysis on the DPRK Leadership
Kim Jong Un’s last observed appearance was his observation and guidance at the test of a submarine-launched ballistic missile on April 23
(updated May 7, 2016 to include additional platform members and the messages of the Ch’o’ndoist Ch’o’ngu and Korean Social Democratic Parties)
The first day of the Seventh Congress of the Workers’ Party of Korea [WPK] took place at the April 25 House of Culture in Pyongyang on May 6 (Friday). The first day of the Party Congress included an opening speech by Kim Jong Un (Kim Cho’ng-u’n), the presentation of a series of congratulatory messages, flowers and silk banners and the 7th Party Congress sending messages to the military and national police as well as to production units who made accomplishments during the 70-day battle. The 7th Party Congress also approved the congress’ agenda and it adjourned into its second day after Kim Jong Un began delivering the report of the WPK Central Committee report.
Kim Jong Un (Kim Cho’ng-u’n) delivered a speech on the morning of May 6. Attending Kim Jong Un’s speech on the platform during the opening session with him were the members of the WPK Political Bureau: Supreme People’s Assembly [SPA] Presidium President Kim Yong Nam and Korean People’s Army [KPA] General Political Department (bureau) Director Vice Marshal Hwang Pyong So.
According to KCNA, Jong Un’s speech was:
Today we are holding the historic Seventh Congress of the Workers’ Party of Korea amid the grand struggle in which the whole Party, the entire army and all the people, filled with iron nerves and confidence to achieve the final victory of the Chuch’e revolution as soon as possible, are making an all-out, general onward march courageously, thwarting all manner of threats and desperate challenges by the imperialists.
Reflecting the infinite loyalty and ardent reverence of delegates, Party members, service personnel and all other people across the country, I would like first to extend the noblest tribute and greatest glory to the great Comrades Kim Il Sung (Kim Il-so’ng) and Kim Jong Il (Kim Cho’ng-il) who are the founder and builder of the WPK, incarnations of the mightiness of the invincible WPK, and eternal leaders of our Party and people.
During the period under review our Party and people have waged a sacred yet arduous struggle to defend socialism and propel the cause of the Chuch’e revolution victoriously under the wise leadership of the great President Kim Il Sung and General Kim Jong Il.
In this period our Party’s ranks have been deprived of such anti-Japanese revolutionary war veterans as Kim Il, Choe Hyon, O Paek Ryong, O Jin U, Choe Kwang, Rim Chun Chu, Pak Song Chol, Jon Mun Sop and Ri Ul Sol, who, holding the great leaders in high esteem, devoted themselves entirely to the country and people on the long road of the Chuch’e revolution.
And they have been bereft of many faithful revolutionary comrades, including Ho Tam, Yon Hyong Muk, Kim Jung Rin, Ho Jong Suk, Kim Kuk Thae, Kim Yong Sun, Kim Yang Gon, Jon Pyong Ho, Pak Song Bong, Ri Chan Son, Ri Je Gang, Ri Yong Chol, Kang Ryang Uk, Ri Jong Ok, Kim Rak Hui and An Tal Su, who worked with devotion for the strengthening and development of our Party and the victory of the socialist cause.
We have also lost Jo Myong Rok, Kim Kwang Jin, Kim Tu Nam, Jon Jae Son, Yun Chi Ho, Ri Tong Chun, Kim Ha Gyu, Ri Jin Su, Sim Chang Wan and other precious comrades-in-arms in the So’ngun (military-first) revolution who performed heroic exploits in the struggle to strengthen and develop the revolutionary armed forces.
In addition, Ri Sung Gi, Im Rok Jae, Chon Se Bong, Paek In Jun, Yu Won Jun, Ri Sang Byok, Pak Yong Sun and other academicians, professors, doctors, writers, People’s Artistes and People’s Athletes, who bent all their energies and wisdom to developing science, culture and the arts, and sports, and Han Tok Su, Choe Tok Sin, Ri In Mo, Rim Hon Sik, Kim Kwang Thaek and other unforgettable revolutionary comrades and pro-reunification, patriotic figures passed away.
These people devoted their all unsparingly to the victory of the cause of the Chuch’e revolution, reunification of the country and national prosperity, in loyal support of the WPK and the leader; the brilliant victory of our revolution and the present glory of the socialist country are attributable to their priceless blood and self-sacrifice.
To the memory of the anti-Japanese revolutionary war veterans, patriotic martyrs, unforgettable revolutionary comrades-in-arms of our Party and pro-reunification, patriotic figures who laid down their precious lives in the struggle for socialist construction, national reunification and the cause of global independence, I propose to observe a minute’s silence.
The Seventh Congress of the WPK has been convened at a historic time when the phase of leap forward in implementing the cause of the Juche revolution is being opened up.
The last decades since the Sixth Congress of the WPK were characterized by grim struggle and glorious victory on the part of our Party and people.
During the period under review the situation of our revolution was very grave and complex.
In the unprecedentedly hard times when the world socialist system collapsed and the allied imperialist forces concentrated their anti-socialist offensive on our Republic, our Party and people were compelled to fight against them single-handed.
The imperialists strained the situation constantly for decades to keep our people from living at peace even for a moment and blocked all the pathways to economic development and existence through all manner of blockade, pressure and sanctions.
In the face of harsh and manifold difficulties and ordeals and the hardships and sufferings worse than those during a war, our Party and people were united more firmly around the Central Committee of the WPK, holding the President and the General in high esteem as the centre of unity and leadership, and made strenuous efforts to defend and advance the socialist cause, following only the revolutionary line of Chuch’e put forward by the great leaders as they braved the storm of history without the slightest hesitation or vacillation.
As there were the wise leadership of the President and the General and the might of single-hearted unity of the WPK, the army and the people around the leader, we were able to etch proud victories in history, smashing the schemes of the allied imperialist forces to stifle the Republic at every step and safeguarding the red flag of socialism and the gains of the revolution to the last.
During the period under review, the WPK embodied the Chuch’e-oriented line of party building of General Kim Jong Il to become a powerful body, ideologically pure and organizationally integrated, in which oneness has been achieved in ideology and leadership and to develop into a motherly party assuming the responsibility for the destiny of the masses of the people, an ever-victorious party with seasoned and sophisticated art of leadership and a steel-strong and promising revolutionary party.
This year when the Seventh Congress of the WPK is held, our service personnel and people achieved great successes in the first hydrogen bomb test and the launch of earth observation satellite Kwangmyo’ngso’ng 4 which served as landmarks in the nation’s history spanning 5 000 years, thus raising the dignity and might of Chuch’e Korea to the highest level possible; in high spirits, they conducted a dynamic 70-day campaign of loyalty to perform great feats and make unprecedented labour successes in all fields of socialist construction.
All the service personnel and people throughout the country displayed the spirit of carrying out the policies of the WPK to the death in response to its militant call for launching the 70-day campaign, thereby making the greatest successes and leap forward in all sectors of the national economy and achieving the brilliant result of exceeding the targets of the campaign set by the WPK.
During the campaign, the electric-power, coal-mining and metallurgical industries and rail transport sector strove hard for increased output and transport to bring about a surge in production, and many units in different sectors of the national economy including the machine-building, chemical, building-materials and light industries and agriculture raised a strong wind to ensure modernization and domestic production of our style and bring about an upswing in production, thus making the distinguished achievement of carrying out the first half-year and yearly national economic plans ahead of schedule.
Our heroic working class of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il, scientists and technicians waged an unyielding struggle on the principle of giving priority to self-development to develop and manufacture new machines and equipment based on local efforts and technology, thereby presenting them as gifts to the Congress of the motherly Party. Others across the country wonderfully completed lots of major construction projects, which will be highly conducive to developing the economy and improving the people’s living standards, in a short span of time before the Congress to send reports of loyalty to the Central Committee of the WPK.
Those in the national defense science sector that played a magnificent prelude to this meaningful year with a thrilling explosion of Juche Korea’s first hydrogen bomb went on to create momentous miracles in defending our national dignity and sovereignty, thus topping off the 70-day campaign and opening wide the door to the Seventh Congress of the WPK, full of pride in being victors.
All sectors and all units, burning their hearts with ardent loyalty to the WPK and extraordinary patriotic enthusiasm, sped up the grand revolutionary march to celebrate the Seventh Congress of the WPK as a glorious meeting of victors. This fully demonstrated the firm faith and will of our service personnel and people who are triumphantly building a thriving nation before the eyes of the world by smashing the hostile forces’ vicious manoeuvres geared to sanctions and strangulation, and displayed to the world the indomitable spirit, daring grit and inexhaustible strength of heroic Korea.
The numerous eye-opening events that happened one after another in the run-up to the meaningful Congress of the WPK–all these achievements are permeated with the precious sweat, ardent passion and unassuming effort of the Party members who have always thrown in their lot with the WPK and adorned the golden age of socialist construction with uninterrupted revolutionary upsurges.
I would like to extend heartfelt thanks and militant greetings, on behalf of the Central Committee of the WPK, to all the delegates, Party members, service personnel of the Korean People’s Army and other people, who have adorned the sacred history of the WPK with hot blood and sweat of patriotism and made a great contribution to celebrating the Seventh Congress of the WPK as a meeting of victory and glory by clasping the weapons of revolution, hammer, sickle and writing brush with a burning conviction to travel one road for ever following our Party.
On the occasion of our Party’s significant Congress my warm greetings go to the Anti-imperialist National Democratic Front, Korean Social Democratic Party, Chondoist Chongu Party, south Korean people, Chongryon (General Association of Korean Residents in Japan) and other overseas Koreans’ organizations and all the compatriots abroad that are working hard for the country’s reunification and prosperity.
On behalf of the Congress of the WPK, I also extend warm thanks and greetings to political parties and organizations, Juche idea study groups, friendship and solidarity organizations and personages from all walks of life in different countries of the world and representatives of diplomatic missions and international organizations in the DPRK, that have rendered positive support and encouragement to our revolution and sent congratulatory messages, letters and baskets of flowers to the Seventh Congress of the WPK.
The Seventh Congress of the WPK will sum up the brilliant successes and invaluable experience our Party and people have gained during the period under review and put forward the strategic line and tasks to keep ushering in a great golden age of socialist construction and the direction of advance of our revolution.
This Congress of the WPK will be a historic occasion for setting up another milestone in the struggle for the development of the glorious Kimilsungist-Kimjongilist Party and the accomplishment of the cause of socialism.
3 467 delegates have the right to vote in this Congress and 200 delegates have the right to address it; all of them are present here as they have been elected at the conferences of the WPK at different levels.
Among them 1 545 are delegates of Party officials and political workers, 719 delegates of service personnel, 423 delegates of state administrative and economic officials, 52 delegates of officials of working people’s organizations, 112 delegates of officials in the sectors of science, education, public health, culture and the arts and the mass media, 786 delegates of hardcore Party members involved in field labour, six anti-Japanese revolutionary war veterans and 24 former unconverted long-term prisoners.
Of them 315 are women.
Present at the Congress are also 1 387 observers.
Fully convinced that this Congress of the WPK will perform its work satisfactorily backed up by high political enthusiasm of all delegates to be a historic meeting that will leave an outstanding mark on the development of our Party and revolution and a meeting for general advance to hasten the final victory of the cause of the Chuch’e revolution, I declare the Seventh Congress of the WPK open.
After Kim Jong Un’s speech, a moment of silence was observed to honor the memory “of the anti-Japanese revolutionary war veterans, patriotic martyrs, officials, working people and pro-reunification patriotic figures who laid down their precious lives in the struggle for socialist construction, national reunification and the cause of global independence in loyal support of the guidance of the Party and the leader.”
Attending the Party Congress are 3 467 delegates elected during provincial party and various institutional party conferences along with 1 545 ” officials of party, armed forces and power organs, economic organs, working people’s organizations and those in the fields of science, education, public health, literature and arts and media nominated at the provincial party conferences as observers.”
Among those sitting on the platform were: Kim Yong Nam; VMar Hwang Pyong So; Pak Pong Ju (DPRK Premier); Choe Ryong Hae (WPK Secretary for Workers’ and Social Organizations); General Pak Yong Sik (Minister of the People’s Armed Forces); General Ri Myong Su (Chief of the KPA General Staff); Kim Ki Nam (WPK Secretary for and Director of Propaganda and Agitation); Choe T’ae Bok (WPK Secretary for Science and Education and SPA Chairman); Yang Hyong Sop (SPA Presidium Vice President); Vice Marshal Ri Yong Mu (Vice Chairman of the National Defense Commission); General O Kuk Ryol (Vice Chairman of the National Defense Commission); Kwak Pom Gi (WPK Secretary for and Director of the Planning and Finance Department); Kim P’yo’ng-hae (WPK Secretary for and Director of Cadres’ Affairs); Kim Yong Chol (WPK Secretary for and Director of the United Front); O Su Yong (WPK Secretary for Light Industry); General Kim Won Hong (Minister of State Security); General Choe Pu Il (Minister of People’s Security); Ro Tu Chol (DPRK Vice Premier and Chairman of the State Planning Commission); Jo Yon Jun (Senior Deputy Director of the WPK Organization Guidance Department); Ri Su Yong (DPRK Foreign Minister); Choe Yong Rim (Honorary Vice President of the SPA Presidium and immediate past DPRK Premier); Jo Yong Won (deputy director of the WPK Organization Guidance Department); Jon Yong Nam (Chairman of the Kim Il Sung Youth League Central Committe); Ju Kyu Chang (immediate past Director of the WPK Military Industries (machine-building industry) Department), Pak To Chun (senior deputy director of the WPK Military (machine-building) Industries Department and immediate past WPK Secretary), Jo Chun Ryong (Chairman of the Second Economic Committee and Member of the National Defense Commission), General Yun Jong Rin (Director of the Guard Command), General Jo Kyong Chol (Director of the Military Security Command), WPK provincial committee secretaries and other senior officials of the WPK, KPA, internal security agencies and the DPRK Government.
Congratulatory messages and silk banners from the DPRK’s two other political parties, the Korean Social Democratic Party and the Ch’o’ndoist Ch’o’ngu Party and from the Anti-Imperialist National Democratic Front, Chosen Soren (Chongryon, or the General Association of Korean Residents in Japan), the General Association of Koreans in China were mentioned Floral baskets, messages, medallions, honorary degrees and titles from various political parties, foreign governments, foreign and foreign fraternal parties (including the Communist Party of China), foreign leadership figures, social organizations and Chuch’e study groups were presented to Kim Jong Un.
The message from the Ch’o’ndoist Ch’o’ngu Party said that it is “the long-cherished desire of the Ch’o’ndoists to build a peaceful world without any foreign forces’ aggression and interference which is equal for all.” According to KCNA the Ch’o’ndoist Ch’o’ngu Party also said:
However, such desire was just like rainbow in the sky and mirage in the past period when they did not have the great leader.
It was realized thanks to the WPK which has held the great leaders in high esteem generation after generation and taken the responsibility for the people’s destiny and even for their future.
The members of the Ch’o’ndoist Ch’o’ngu Party and other Ch’o’ndoists have enjoyed a happy life with nothing more to desire in the world as they live with no worry as proud members of the dignified nation. This is entirely thanks to the WPK which brings about the prosperity of the nation with its benevolent politics, So’ngun (military-first) politics of loving the country, the nation and the people.
The Ch’o’ndoist Ch’o’ngu Party will as ever invariably and absolutely support and follow the WPK’s policy and cause of justice and closely cooperate with it by firmly joining it on the road of struggle for building a thriving nation and achieving national reunification no matter how situation at home and abroad may change.
The message from the Korean Social Democratic Party said that the 7th Party Congress will ” will be a brilliant landmark for hastening the final victory in building a thriving nation and a watershed for bringing about a new turning point in the life and destiny of the Korean people.” According to KCNA the KSDP also said:
The WPK is the organizer and guide of all the victories of the Korean people as it has performed immortal exploits before the times and history weathering grim tempests of the revolution, while taking the responsibility for the destiny of the country and its people.
This is the precious truth which the members of the KSDP keenly felt witnessing brilliant victory and successes in the annals of the revolution, and review of history.
The great tower built by the WPK in the history of the country serves as a powerful engine and banner for the KSDP which is advancing shoulder to shoulder with the WPK on the road of building a thriving nation and reunifying the country since the liberation of Korea.
The members of the KSDP will go for all ages together with the WPK along the road of the sacred struggle to bring earlier the rosy future of Kim Il Sung‘s nation and Kim Jong Il‘s Korea and proudly build Kim Jong Un‘s most powerful Paektusan nation, true to the invariable course directed by the WPK.
The 7th Party Congress then elected its Secretariat and messages from the Chosen Soren Central Committee and the General Association of Koreans in China were read to the party congress participants and silk banners from these organizations were presented to Kim Jong Un.
The 7th Party Congress then sent a congratulatory message to the KPA and the Korean People’s Internal Security Forces [KPISF]. According to KCNA the message said that the KPA and KPISF “made unprecedented achievements and innovations in the drive for defending socialism while taking the lead in the general revolutionary advance and devotedly safeguarded the Congress under the So’ngun (military-first) leadership of the respected Supreme Commander Kim Jong Un” and that the KPA and KPISF “demonstrated on the highest level their revolutionary character as the army of the leader and the party and played a pioneer and key role in accomplishing the historic cause of turning the DPRK into the world-level military power.The KPA won a great victory and performed shining feats in the drive to increase the military capabilities and defend the country and in all fields of building a thriving nation while displaying its invincible spirit and might as the elite revolutionary army before the world.”
The KPA/KPISF message also said that “service personnel of the KPISF shattered the vicious moves of all enemies and firmly defended the people including the heroic Kim Il Sung–Kim Jong Il working class performing signal miracles and innovations in the day and night advance of the 70-day campaign of loyalty.” It noted that the 7th Party Congress “highly appreciated all the service personnel of the KPA and the KPISF for having reliably safeguarded politically and militarily the victorious advance of the revolutionary cause of Chuch’e, the revolutionary cause of So’ngun (military-first), brilliantly recorded the pages of the 70-day campaign book with the greatest successes and labor feats by waging a high-pitched drive for creating the new speed of Korea and thus greeted the party congress. Very great is the expectation of the party and the people towards the KPA and the KPISF in the gigantic drive for laying a firm foundation for accomplishing the socialist cause true to the militant programme to be set forth by the 7th Congress of the WPK.” Finally the message “expressed belief that all the service personnel of the heroic KPA and the KPISF would honorably and perfectly fulfill the heavy responsibility and mission they assumed before the party, people era and revolution in the sacred struggle for victoriously advancing the cause of the Chuch’e revolution, the cause of the great Paektusan (Mt. Paektu) nation.”
The 7th Party Congress then approved a congratulatory message to “working people and officials of institutions, industrial establishments and co-op farms who performed shining labor feats in the 70-day campaign of loyalty.” It noted that the “70-day campaign was a great one for consolidating the single-minded unity of the party, army and people of the DPRK as firm as a rock, bringing about a great innovation and leap forward in building a thriving nation, foiling the vicious moves of the hostile forces to put pressure on the DPRK and stifle it and fully demonstrating the dignity and might of the great Paektusan (Mt. Paektu) nation. The Central Committee of the WPK together with its Central Military Commission made public joint slogans in order to glorify this year in which its Seventh Congress is to be held as a year of great heyday in building a thriving nation, ardently appealed to all party members to stage the 70-day campaign in the letter to them and clearly indicated the orientation and ways for winning victory in the on-going general advance.Unprecedented achievements have been made in the above-said campaign thanks to the heroic struggle of the working people and officials who turned out to greet the Seventh Congress of the WPK out of their boundless loyalty and warm patriotism toward the party.”
The message said that the party congress “extended warm congratulations to the working people and officials of the institutions, industrial establishments and co-op farms who creditably fulfilled the tasks before them during the campaign by sharing the thought, will and pace with the party and fully displaying matchless heroism and self-sacrificing spirit” and it “expressed belief that they would get united closer around Marshal Kim Jong Un and thoroughly carry through the important tasks set forth by the Congress and make strenuous efforts for the eternal victory of the great Paektusan (Mt. Paektu) nation shining with the august names of President Kim Il Sung and leader Kim Jong Il and the final victory in the building of a thriving nation.”
Then, the 7th Party Congress approved the agenda which was :
After the agenda was approved, Kim Jong Un began the WPK Central Committee report. The congress adjourned and will continue the WPK Central Committee report of its work and activities on the second day of the party congress.