A source from North Korea reported on the 23rd that the election of the 12nd representatives of the Supreme People’s Assembly will be carried out at the beginning of August.
The North Korean Supreme People’s Assembly officially announced on the 19th that it plans to execute the elections of provincial representatives of the city, village, and district People’s Assemblies on July 29th. In North Korea, elections for city, village, and district People’s Assembly representatives are carried out every four years and in August 2003, 26,650 provincial representatives were selected.
On one hand, the election for the Supreme People’s Assembly representatives, according to North Korean constitutional law, has been carried out every five years. Accordingly, the normal timetable should be August 2008 for the upcoming election. However, due to the Kim Il Sung’s death in ’94, the ’98 10th representative elections occurred in eight years and three months.
The current 11th representative elections were held at the same time as provincial representative elections in August 2003.
The source said, “The government, starting beginning of June, gathered civilians’ residential cards and entered into composing a roster for the Supreme People’s Assembly’s representative elections. The People’s Safety Agency is currently in the middle of a secret investigation into the deceased, missing people, and those who have not reported because they have moved.”
The making of the election roster is also carried out for provincial representative elections.
Detailed evidence for whether the Supreme People’s Assembly elections and the provincial representative elections will be carried out at the same time has not been discovered yet. The North Korean government, through the Chosun (North Korea) Central News Agency, formally announced, “The city, village, and district representative elections will be carried out on July 29th, but a reference has not been made regarding the Supreme People’s Assembly elections yet.”
However, it is difficult to completely exclude the possibility of the simultaneous execution of elections as long as one can expect change in North Korea’s foreign relations and the economic sacrifice problem.
If North Korea simultaneously carries out the provincial representative elections and the Supreme People’s Assembly representative elections at the same time, the possibility is high that it will terminate the process of searching for missing citizens’ whereabouts which has continued these last 10 years as well as the defector issue and will spur building the solidarity of the domestic system.
Kim Sung Hoon (pseudonym, Chongjin, North Hamkyung), who defected in December 2006, explained, “In North Korea, failure to participate in elections is considered as a ‘political reactionary activity’ and if one does not participate in elections without ‘report his or her death,’ the official documents of history are submitted to the National Security Agency and that person becomes, in essence, a ‘public criminal.'”