SEOUL: North Korean leader Kim Jong Un called for redoubled efforts to overcome the difficulties and challenges facing his country as it opened a key political meeting after conducting a record number of missile tests this year.
A plenary meeting of the ruling Workers’ Party was convened in Pyongyang on Monday to review past projects and discuss work plans for next year, the Korean Central News Agency reported on Tuesday.
Kim will likely use the meeting to reaffirm his determination to expand his nuclear arsenal and introduce high-tech weapons targeting the United States and South Korea while putting in place projects to revive public livelihoods hit by the pandemic, some experts say.
In his opening comments, Kim likened the difficulties and challenges since a bigger party meeting in early 2021 to “the decade-long struggle of the revolution.” But he said North Korea had reported some successes “on an arduous journey” and that his country’s power had “remarkably” grown in the political, military, economic and cultural spheres.
“He stressed the need to strategize to launch more exciting and confident struggles based on valuable facts that the country has made practical progress after enduring all the difficulties,” the official news agency said. Korean. made this year and clarified “strategic and tactical tasks” for achieving North Korean-style socialism.
KCNA did not elaborate on Kim’s claimed achievement and the tasks he set for himself, and his claims of achievement could not be independently confirmed.
Kim may need such propaganda-driven claims to attract greater public loyalty to push tough projects to bolster his arsenal of weapons and solve economic problems while facing sanctions and pressure campaigns. led by the United States to curb its nuclear ambitions, according to some observers.
The Workers’ Party meeting is expected to last several days, and Kim is likely to address issues such as his arms buildup, his relationship with the United States and the economy in later sessions.
This year, Kim’s military test launched a record number of missiles, many of them nuclear-capable weapons capable of reaching the American mainland and its allies South Korea and Japan. He has said he will not resume talks with the US unless it withdraws its hostile policies, in an apparent reference to US-led sanctions and its regular military drills with South Korea. .
Monday, animosities on the korean peninsula rose further after South Korea accused North Korea of ​​flying drones across its stretched border for the first time in five years and responded by firing warning shots and jamming warplanes.
It was unclear whether any of the North Korean drones had been shot down.
South Korea said it also sent its own surveillance assets, in an apparent reference to unmanned drones, across the border.

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