The new North Korean leader has made an unusual speech during one such firsts in North Korea in terms of celebrations, that was broadcasted on the North Korean state media.
While Kim Jong-un praised Pyongyang’s performance during 2012, including launching a satellite into space. He also spoke about reuniting the two Koreas, and the need to improve the economy.
Al Jazeera’s Florence Looi says the tone of Kim Jung Un’s speech was unusual
NORTH Korea’s young leader Kim Jong-Un has called for a “radical turnabout” in the impoverished country’s economy, in a rare New Year’s address that also urged improved relations with the South.
While the heart of his lengthy speech was devoted to turning the North into an “economic giant” and raising living standards, Mr Kim stressed that military power remained a national priority.
“The military might of a country represents its national strength. Only when it builds up its military might in every way can it develop into a thriving country,” he said in a voiced message broadcast on state television.
The address will be closely parsed for meaning in South Korea, which just elected its first woman president, the conservative Park Geun-Hye, who has signalled a willingness for greater engagement with Pyongyang.
The voiced message was the first of its kind since Mr Kim’s grandfather, the North’s founding president Kim Il-Sung, delivered one in 1994, the year of his death.