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NK leader specified policy direction for inter-Korean, external matters

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un clenches his fist during the second plenary meeting of the central committee of the Workers' Party in Pyongyang on Monday, in this photo released by the Korean Central News Agency. The meeting addressed details to put into practice a new five-year economic development plan set forth at the party's eighth congress the previous month. (KCNA-Yonhap)
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un clenches his fist during the second plenary meeting of the central committee of the Workers' Party in Pyongyang on Monday, in this photo released by the Korean Central News Agency. The meeting addressed details to put into practice a new five-year economic development plan set forth at the party's eighth congress the previous month. (KCNA-Yonhap)

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un specified the direction for polices related to inter-Korean relations as he held a Workers' Party meeting to discuss follow-up measures on plans set forth at last month's party congress, state media said Wednesday.

Kim attended the second day of the plenary meeting of the party's eighth Central Committee held on Tuesday and reported on domestic economic issues and other external matters, including relations with South Korea, according to the Korean Central News Agency.

"The General Secretary in the report evinced the militant tasks to be carried out by the People's Army and the munitions industry this year for implementing the decisions set forth by the 8th Party Congress, and the direction of future action to be taken by the sector in charge of affairs with South Korea and the sector in charge of external affairs," the KCNA said.

It did not provide more details on the military tasks and inter-Korean matters.

At the party congress early last month, Kim vowed to advance nuclear capabilities, calling the United States its biggest enemy, and said any change in currently chilled inter-Korean relations will depend upon South Korea's future attitude. He also disclosed a five-year economic development plan after admitting a failure in his previous development measures.

Inter-Korean relations have remained stalled since a no-deal summit between Kim and then US President Donald Trump in 2019. Cross-border ties chilled further after the North blew up a joint liaison office in its border town of Kaesong last year in anger over anti-Pyongyang leaflets sent from the South.

In the report to the party meeting, Kim set forth this year's tasks for different sectors, including economy and culture, and called for "enhancing the role of the state organs for economic guidance to carry them out," the KCNA said.

Kim also "put forward the tasks for the fishing sector to put the fishing and aquatic farming on a regular basis so as to provide people with more marine products," it added.

"Noting that the Party will support the bold renovation in the economic work to the end, the General Secretary stressed over again the need for economic guidance officials to decisively enhance their responsibility and role in planning and guiding this year's economic work," the KCNA said.

A plenary session of the ruling party's Central Committee usually takes place at least once a year to decide its key policy line, organization reshuffles and other major issues. This week's meeting is second of its kind this year after the first plenary meeting of the committee was held last month during the party congress.

The KCNA said that the plenary meeting will continue, without saying when it will end. (Yonhap)

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