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Summary of domestic news in North Korea this week

All Headlines 16:00 May 22, 2020

SEOUL, May 22 (Yonhap) -- The following is a summary of domestic news in North Korea this week.

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N. Korean paper calls for strong belief in own power amid sanctions, global pandemic

SEOUL, May 17 (Yonhap) -- North Korea's official newspaper called Sunday for strong conviction in building socialism in the face of challenges, saying that there is no challenge that cannot be overcome if one has a strong belief in one's own power.

North Korea has intensified calls for self-reliance in many areas as the country appears to be facing a double whammy of crippling global sanctions and the fallout from the global coronavirus pandemic.

"Our people's conviction and will are firm and strong to open the path toward a new victory of building socialism against harsh crisis under the leadership of our party," the Rodong Sinmun, the organ of the North's ruling party, said.

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N.K. propaganda outlet slams those responsible for Gwangju uprising on 40th anniversary

SEOUL, May 18 (Yonhap) -- A North Korean propaganda outlet on Monday slammed a former South Korean president over the bloody crackdown on a 1980 pro-democracy uprising, urging fair punishment for an atrocity "worse than that of the German Nazis."

Uriminzokkiri, one of the North's propaganda websites, made the accusation as South Korea marks the 40th anniversary of the May 18 uprising in the southwestern city of Gwangju quelled ruthlessly by the military junta led by then Gen. Chun Doo-hwan.

The crackdown left more than 200 people killed and 1,800 others wounded..

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N. Korean paper highlights provincial efforts to increase rice production

SEOUL, May 18 (Yonhap) -- North Korea's official newspaper on Monday highlighted intensifying efforts in a provincial area to increase rice production as the country is striving to achieve "food self-reliance" amid worries about chronic food shortages cause by extreme weather and global sanctions.

The Rodong Sinmun, the organ of the North's ruling party, carried comments made by local party officials in South Hwanghae Province, known as one of the country's breadbaskets, featuring their strong will and ongoing efforts to expand farming production.

"If you see any fields and paddies and sit down with farmers, you can find a very high level of spirit," the paper quoted a party official of the province as saying. He also vowed to turn the province into a place where the party's agricultural development plans can be perfectly realized.

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N. Korea's official paper calls for localization to defend dignity

SEOUL, May 20 (Yonhap) -- North Korea's official newspaper Wednesday urged the use of locally made products over imported goods, stressing that localization is key to safeguarding the sovereignty and survival of the communist nation.

North Korea has emphasized localization as part of efforts to build a self-reliant economy amid bleak outlooks for any immediate sanctions lifting due to a stalemate in denuclearization negotiations with the United States.

"Localization is our republic's war to defend dignity to the last death," the Rodong Sinmun, the organ of the North's ruling party, said. "Without one's own and with weak power, it would bow to others and eventually lose its right to autonomy and survival."

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N. Korea's official paper denies leaders can magically contract space

SEOUL, May 21 (Yonhap) -- North Korea's official newspaper denied its leaders can magically contract space, a long tradition used to idolize founder Kim Il-sung and late leader Kim Jong-il, in the latest sign of a change in the regime's myth-making efforts.

The Rodong Sinmun, the organ of the North's ruling party, carried an article on Wednesday denying its leaders can practice "chukjibeop," a hypothetical method of folding space and traveling far distances in a short period of time that has been used by the North to deify its leaders.

"In realistic terms, a person cannot suddenly disappear and reappear by folding space," the article said.
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