A television screen in the South Korean capital of Seoul shows file footage of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un on May 6, 2016. (AFP photo)
Leader Kim Jong Un has hailed the recent nuclear and missile tests by his military as unprecedented despite global reaction to the tests which led to fresh economic sanctions against the country.
In his address Friday to the congress of its ruling party in Pyongyang, Kim said some “unprecedented results have been accomplished” in North Korea
’s January test of a nuclear weapon and a later rocket launch of a satellite into space in February, saying the tests were carried out with “great success.”
“This year during which the party’s congress is held, our military successfully conducted the first H-bomb test … an historic landmark in the 5,000-year history of our people,” Kim said.
The remarks, carried by North Korea’s state television KRT, came as the country opened earlier in the day the seventh Workers’ Party congress, a first in nearly four decades. TV images showed the 33-year-old Kim, who was wearing a dark western-style suit and grey tie, consistently praising his country’s nuclear and other military achievements.
Nearly 3,000 party members attended the rare political gathering in what is seen by observers as a move to get approval for leader Kim’s ideology of developing the economy and nuclear weapons.
Reports over the past months have suggested that Kim is seeking to obtain formal approval for his new ideology, “Byongjin,” which will replace the “Songun,” or “military first” policy of his late father, Kim Jong-il, whom the young leader succeeded in 2011. Byongjin is the policy of simultaneously developing the economy and nuclear weapons.
Kim said before the meeting that he will lay out during the conference “the brilliant blueprint that will advance the final victory of our revolution.”
The congress will likely last four to five days. The last such meeting was held in 1980, when the country’s founder and Kim’s grandfather, Kim Il-sung, was still in power.