Kim orders strengthening of North Korean defence capabilities

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Kim orders strengthening of North Korean defence capabilities

The picture released from the DPRK's official Korean Central News Agency shows the Third Enlarged Meeting of the Eighth Central Military Commission of the Workers' Party of Korea at the party's central committee headquarters in Pyongyang on June 24, 2022. STRAFP SEOUL - The Democratic People's Republic of Korea's eader Kim Jong-un ordered a strengthening of the country's defence capabilities, as he wrapped up a key party meeting with top military officials amid concerns about a potential nuclear test, state media said on Friday.

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The meeting has been closely watched due to growing speculation that Pyongyang could conduct its first nuclear test in five years, which the US and the Republic of Korea officials have said could take place at any time now.

Kim presided over a three-day General Meeting of the 8th Central Military Commission that ended on Thursday, where top officials examined and approved an important issue of providing a military guarantee for further strengthening the country's war deterrent, according to official KCNA media.

The KCNA report did not mention the DPRK's nuclear or ballistic missile programme, but said Ri Pyong-chol, who has been leading the North's missile development, was elected as vice-chairman of the powerful Party Central Military Commission.

Kim stressed the need for the entire army to consolidate their self-defence capabilities to overwhelm any hostile forces in every way, KCNA said.

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The DPRK decided to bolster the operational duties of its frontline units with an important military action plan during the meeting. State media released a picture of the North's top officials in a meeting with a map of what appeared to be the east coast of the Korean Peninsula on Thursday.

In April, Kim called for the country's military to bolster their strength in every way to annihilate the enemy.