North Korean leader Kim Jong Un recently ordered Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) officials to “focus all diplomatic activities on improving relations with the US and establishing a peace system on the Korean Peninsula,” sources in the country have reported.
“On July 10, Kim Jong Un sent a letter to MOFA officials stationed abroad who were taking part in Central Party criticism sessions and lecture meetings,” said a source in Pyongyang on July 31.
“The letter’s introduction discussed placing a focus on implementing wide ranging exchanges to improve the US-DPRK (abbreviation for North Korea’s formal name) relationship and the use of global diplomatic efforts to ensure the establishment of a peace system on the Korean Peninsula.”
Earlier this month, the North Korean leader recalled the country’s ambassadors from various locations back to Pyongyang, and the letter seems to have been sent around the time of their arrival back in North Korea. The Central Party’s criticism sessions and lecture meetings took place in a small meeting room in the KWP’s Central Committee building. The letter was addressed to those working in embassies abroad and the foreign anti-espionage units of the Ministry of State Security (MSS).
According to the source, the letter was entitled, “Regarding putting dignity into practice for the motherland and people by showing firm and uniform resolve on the Party’s foreign policy and fundamental viewpoints and new diplomatic abilities that meet the demands of the current situation.” The letter presented several items for discussion during the Central Party’s criticism session and lecture meetings.
There were a total of six orders detailed in the letter handed down by the North Korean leader and it presented the directions to be taken in the Central Party’s criticism sessions and lectures, and impending tasks for the diplomatic corps.
A second source in Pyongyang familiar with the document said that therein, Kim ordered (among other things) that the following actions are to take place: 1) analysis of the current diplomatic stage and study of the Party’s independent (juche-based) diplomatic position; 2) a critical review of the Party’s foreign diplomatic policy goals and implementation process in lecture meetings; 3) study of the central tasks of those diplomatic officials abroad in order to support the ultimate victory of the juche revolutionary feat and the invincible North Korean-style socialist system.
“The submission of a report by each overseas consulate be written analyzing the direction and duties of the diplomatic activities with the US and Japan, which are North Korea’s enemies but also impossible to ignore on the international stage, and their allies,” the letter reads, according to the second source.
“Cooperation with China and Russia must be strengthened and the Party’s new overseas policies and strategies must be implemented uniformly to resolve diplomatic issues concerning the international community.”
“MOFA officials and those working in overseas consulates must have a high political awareness and loyalty toward diplomatic achievement in order for the Party’s and government’s domestic and foreign policies be achieved by 2022,” the letter adds.
Kim’s mention of the year 2022 highlights a period full of important political events in North Korea, including the 10th anniversary of the Kim Jong Un regime, Kim Il Sung’s 110th birthday, and Kim Jong Il’s 80th birthday. There is also a presidential election in South Korea the same year along with the holding of the 20th Communist Party Conference in China, which will determine whether Xi Jinping’s rule is extended.