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North Korean leader Kim dismisses top general and calls for preparations for war

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has fired his top general and called for ramping up war preparations “in an offensive manner,” including ramping up weapons production and holding more drills, reports said Thursday the state media.

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With a cigarette in hand, who he was shown speaking to a room full of uniformed senior generals and pointing at maps, images were shown to state media, as he discussed “major military actions” against South Korea at a meeting of the Central Military Commission.

The Korean Central News Agency said the agenda for the meeting, which comes just days after Kim inspected key weapons factories, was “the matter of war preparations” and ensuring “perfect military preparation for aa war“.

The meeting comes as Seoul and Washington prepare for major joint drills later this month, which the North sees as rehearsals for invasion and has repeatedly warned it could unleash “overwhelming” action in response.

At the meeting, Kim fired Chief of Staff Pak Su Il, replacing him with Vice Marshal Ri Yong Gil, KCNA said without elaborating.

Pak, who was promoted to the post late last year, may have been fired “because he did not demonstrate sufficient competence in the field of military operations,” according to Cheong Seong-chang, a researcher at the Sejong Institute.

“Kim Jong Un has shown a tendency to quickly replace officials when they are deemed incapable of monitoring and performing their duties,” he said.

Ri may have been the “most suitable person” to replace Pak as he has previously held the position for a long time, Cheong added.

‘Mass production’ of weapons

Kim called for “all munitions industrial establishments to move forward with mass production of several weapons and equipment,” the report says.

“He also called for the active conduct of real war exercises to efficiently operate (the) newly deployed weapons and equipment,” he added.

Kim reached an “important conclusion on the KPA’s intensifying war preparations in an offensive manner,” KCNA reported, referring to the North’s military.

KCNA’s latest report appeared to be North Korea“The own response to the upcoming joint military training between Seoul and Washington,” an official from Seoul’s unification ministry told reporters.

Referring to photos in the North’s Rodong Sinmun newspaper showing Kim pointing to what appeared to be a map of Seoul, he said: “I think he wanted to send a message to the South with a threatening action.”

The meeting also discussed preparations for a massive parade to mark the 75th anniversary of the founding of North Korea on September 9.

Last month, Pyongyang celebrated a great military parade to mark the 70th anniversary of the Korean War armistice, and analysts described the event as “North Korea’s largest and most open display of nuclear systems”.

North Korea also had a big one defense the exhibition will coincide with the parade, with Kim giving the visiting Russian defense minister a tour of the country’s newest and most advanced weaponry, including ballistic and spy missiles. drones.



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