Kim Jong Un‘s New Year speech

In a New Year televised speech on Friday, top leader of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea Kim Jong Un pledged to develop the country’s economy.

He said the country must create a turnaround in its economic development.

Kim also said the ruling Workers Party of Korea gives top priority to improving people’s living standards among millions of other national tasks.

Kim has issued similar calls in his three previous New Year addresses and, as on those occasions, Friday’s speech offered little in terms of specific policy for achieving his economic objectives.

On relations with South Korea, Kim said he is open to talks and wants to take action to improve ties. He also demanded Seoul and Washington stop their joint military exercises and other provocations that would raise tensions on the Korean Peninsula.

The speech was Kim’s fourth since he became the country’s leader in 2011.

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