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Kim Jong-un admits North Korean economy is ‘grim’ while pledging to build ‘invincible military’

SCMP, 12 Oct 2021
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North Korean leader Kim Jong-un spoke of his country’s “grim economic situation” on October 10, 2021, as the nation celebrated the 76th anniversary of the founding of the Workers’ Party of Korea. In his speech, Kim also called for the Party’s “single-minded unity” in developing the economy. He also promised “determination to efficiently solve people’s food, clothing and housing problems”, as part of his five-year plan. North Korea has been ramping up the testing of missiles and other weapons amid rising tensions with its southern counterpart. In a speech at a rare defence exhibition on October 11, Kim vowed to build an “invincible” military and said the country did not want to fight its neighbours, but instead wished to “prevent war itself and protect national sovereignty”.

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