1. Domestic Affairs
- Chairman Kim Jong-il urged the military to strengthen combat readiness during the inspections of the Air Force Unit 860 and the Army Unit 230. He also gave on-site instructions on the land readjustment work in Pyongan-namdo Province and emphasized to concentrate on increasing the grain output.
- While mass rallies in support of North Korea's withdrawal from the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) took place in many cities including Hamheung, citizens sang songs of battle at schools, factories and farmlands to inspire anti-American sentiment.
- Marking the 57th anniversary of the founding of the Youth Confederation, North Korea used the occasion to consolidate its internal unity and urged the youth to teach the imperialists a lesson with grit and faith.
- North Korea has recently held the expanded conference attended by all cabinet members and discussed the ways to attain economic goals suggested at the New Year joint editorial including the advancement of the national defense industry.
Social organizations such as the Youth Confederation and General Federation of Trade Unions staged conventions and expressed support for the government statement to withdraw from the NPT and renewed their resolve to achieve the goals.
2. Relations with South Korea
- North Korea announced on January 24 that South Korea's special presidential envoy would visit North Korea January 27 at the request of the southern side. Attention is directed as to whether the visit would produce a momentum to resolve the North Korean nuclear issue.
- At the ninth Inter-Korean Ministerial Talks, the North maintained its previous stance stressing the peaceful use of the nuclear energy and expressed hope that the ongoing economic cooperative projects would proceed continuously.
- At the third inter-Korean Red Cross working-level contact, the South and North agreed to build the reunion center for separated families and on the timetable of the 6th round of reunion of separated families. They also agreed to routinize the exchanges between separated families on a regular basis.
- The second working-level meeting for cross-border road and railway connections was held as scheduled and the Southern delegation of the joint organizing committee of the inter-Korean celebration to usher in the New Year visited the North. This shows that the atmosphere for the inter-Korean economic cooperative projects and private-level exchanges is maintained despite the increasing tension in the international situation.
3. External Affairs
- Chairman Kim Jong-il met Russian presidential envoy Alexander Losyukov on January 20 and exchanged views on Russian proposals to mediate a peaceful solution to the North Koran nuclear issue.
- Taking advantage of the visits to the North by a special envoy of the UN secretary general and an Australian delegation, the North sought to diversify channels of dialogue with the West and expand the basis supporting its position.
- In an interview with Joseon Shinbo, deputy minister of the electricity and coal industry suggested inevitability of reactivating the nuclear facility by saying that the North would generate electricity within a few weeks in Yongbyon. That seemed to signal that North Korea needed to reopen negotiations with the United States immediately.
- The North released the Korean Central News Agency's detailed reports on its withdrawal from the NTP on January 21 and underscored legitimacy of the moves it has taken internally and externally and stressed the efforts to solve the issue peacefully at the bilateral-level talks with the United States.