North Korea’s ruling party to hold 8th congress in early January

Seoul, Dec 30 (efe-epa).- The eighth congress of North Korea’s ruling Workers’ Party, which is expected to decide the regime’s economic and foreign policy goals, will be held in early January, state media KCNA reported Wednesday.

The agency did not specify an exact date for the event.

The decision to hold the party congress early next month was taken at a politburo meeting chaired by the country’s leader, Kim Jong-un, in Pyongyang on Tuesday to prepare for the congress, considered the most important political event in the hermetic country.

“The Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the WPK adopted a decision on holding the 8th Congress of the WPK early in January 2021,” KCNA said.

The regime had announced in August that it would hold the congress in January although it had not specified any date.

It had also explained that it would unveil a new five-year plan to boost the economy, reeling from the impact of several natural disasters that struck the country this year and the coronavirus pandemic and sanctions.

The lists of delegates who will attend the congress were also reviewed in Tuesday’s meeting, KCNA added.

This was the year’s 12th politburo meeting, a record since Kim Jong-un came to power in 2011, which indicates the economic urgency in the country.

The upcoming congress will be the second one to be presided over by Kim Jong-un in less than five years.

The previous one, in which the five-year plan that has just concluded was announced, took place in May 2016 and was the first congress to be held in North Korea in 36 years.

No congresses were convened under the leadership of the current leader’s father, Kim Jong-il.

The event is aimed at restructuring the organization of the country’s only party as well as analyzing its internal policies.

However, some message about the regime’s plans about its weapons of mass destruction program is expected to be made public during the event.

Following the deadlock in denuclearization negotiations between Kim Jong-un and United States President Donald Trump, Pyongyang has made no mention of Joe Biden’s victory in the US presidential elections held in November.

However, many experts forecast that, at the congress, the regime will defend the need to hold on to its nuclear assets and even begin weapons tests from February, following Biden’s inauguration, to try to force a return to negotiations. EFE-EPA


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