SEOUL - North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has entered his fourth year in power on Saturday. He took over as the Korean Workers' Party first secretary in April 2012. Since taking the helm, Kim has been consolidating power by regularly shuffling his close aides.
Even though Kim is pushing for nuclear development and economic recovery, North Korea is more isolated than ever before.
At the Supreme People's Assembly, North Korea's legislature, in Pyongyang on Thursday, the country announced an economic policy and personnel changes at the National Defence Commission, according to the Korean Central News Agency.
While Kim Jong Un was absent from the meeting, Kim Yong Nam, standing commiittee chairman of the Supreme People's Assembly, and Premier Pak Pong Ju attended. This was the second time Kim Jong Un had failed to show up for the assembly. He was also absent last September, when he had reportedly broken his ankle.
Kim Jong Un has stressed improving people's living standards is a top priority. As such, the assembly has reiterated its efforts to solve the country's dire food shortages by improving productivity in the agriculture, livestock and fisheries sectors. The country is trying to develop nuclear technology and rebuild its troubled economy at the same time, according to its media.
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