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N. Korea's newspaper calls Samjiyon development fight against hostile forces

All News 14:47 December 28, 2018

SEOUL, Dec. 28 (Yonhap) -- North Korea's official newspaper on Friday called for stepped-up efforts to develop the northern county of Samjiyon, known as the birthplace of late leader Kim Jong-il, into the "wealthiest" region in the country, calling it a fight against hostile forces bent on sanctions.

"It will have a bigger political meaning than blowing up a nuclear bomb to build the birthplace of the dear general (Kim Jong-il) into the wealthiest county of our country," the Rodong Sinmun said in an editorial.

"Developing Samjiyon County is a fierce class struggle and a political struggle against hostile forces ruthlessly sticking to sanctions on us," it added.

The paper also emphasized that completing the development project as planned will prove to the hostile forces that sanctions can never block the self-reliant North Korea.

The editorial appears to play up its self-reliance efforts amid a stalemate in denuclearization talks with the United States.

Pyongyang wants sanctions relief for denuclearization steps it has taken since the June summit, while Washington calls for more concrete actions before making major concessions.

North Korea claims that Samjiyon County is the birthplace of late leader Kim Jong-il and also a sacred place where founder Kim Il-sung fought against imperial Japanese troops.

Since taking office in late 2011, current North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has called for efforts to develop the county where his late father was born.

Kim earlier announced a plan to complete its development project by 2020, the 75th anniversary of the ruling party's establishment. Kim made a "field guidance" trip to construction sites there three times this year.


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