N. Korea to convene Parliament session

SEOUL • North Korea said yesterday that it will convene a session of its Parliament in late June, following a rare congress of the country's ruling Workers' Party last month that cemented leader Kim Jong Un's control of the isolated state.

"The 4th session of the 13th SPA (Supreme People's Assembly) will be convened in Pyongyang on June 29," the state-run Korean Central News Agency reported. Delegates to the assembly meet annually to formally adopt the state Budget and approve key appointments and legal amendments. The venue is also used to formally approve other decisions by the state leadership.

The party congress, the first in 36 years, was held amid great attention and elevated Mr Kim to the post of party chairman. He declared that the country was a nuclear weapons state but would not use its arsenal unless first attacked.

Mr Kim can put his mark on the parliamentary meeting, which may approve personnel changes announced at last month's congress.

North Korea has come under growing pressure since its January nuclear test and a space rocket launch in February, which led to a new United Nations Security Council resolution in March tightening sanctions against Pyongyang.

But it has defied international pressure and continued a series of weapons-related activities, most recently a failed launch of an intermediate- range ballistic missile on May 31.

REUTERS, AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 10, 2016, with the headline 'N. Korea to convene Parliament session'. Print Edition | Subscribe