N. Korea Convenes 1st Civil Defense Leaders' Gathering in 3 Years
North Korea has convened a meeting of its civil defense leaders for the first time in three years.
The North’s official Korean Central News Agency(KCNA) said on Wednesday that leaders of the Worker-Peasant Red Guards gathered in Pyongyang from Monday to Tuesday to check on the force's combat readiness.
Premier Kim Tok-hun attended the meeting along with other senior party and state officials, the KCNA said.
The meeting, the agency claimed, set a new milestone in the strengthening of the North’s self-defense capabilities by significantly amplifying the political and military power of its civilian forces.
The Worker-Peasant Red Guards’ meeting coincided with the largest joint military exercise between South Korea and the U.S. in five years, which Pyongyang has continuously criticized as a threat and provocation.
The North Korean civil defense unit consists of workers, farmers and administrative employees across the country and has five-point-seven million members, accounting for a quarter of the whole North Korean population.
[Photo : YONHAP News]