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Summary of domestic news in North Korea this week

SEOUL, Oct. 15 (Yonhap) — The following is a summary of domestic news in North Korea this week.

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N. Korea slams Japan’s arms buildup as preparations for aggression

SEOUL — North Korea on Wednesday condemned Japan’s recent push to build up its military, branding it as “preparations for a war of aggression.”

A commentary carried by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) noted Japan is planning to import over 20 U.S.-made reconnaissance drones, and pushing to possess aircraft carriers and introduce the latest stealth fighters.

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T-shirt with portrait of Kim appears at N. Korea’s public event for 1st time

SEOUL — A T-shirt with a printed portrait of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un was spotted during a public event in Pyongyang for the first time, state media showed, amid the reclusive regime’s push to rev up an image of being a “normal state.”

According to footage released by the North’s official Korean Central TV Broadcasting Station on Tuesday, an orchestra conductor was clad in the white T-shirt with Kim’s face printed in black and white on the front at a defense expo the previous day.

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N. Korea vows to strengthen ties with Russia on 73rd anniv. of bilateral ties

SEOUL — North Korea on Tuesday stressed its “invariable” friendship with Russia as they celebrated the 73rd anniversary of establishing ties, vowing to further enhance their cooperation against an “adverse environment.”

Referring to the first meeting between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and Russian President Vladimir Putin in April 2019, the North’s foreign ministry said “an unwavering advance” in bilateral relations was “reaffirmed” and the “long-standing” relations will “invariably be strengthened and developed.”

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(2nd LD) N.K. leader calls for boosting military capabilities but says enemy is ‘war itself’

SEOUL — North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has called for boosting the country’s military capabilities to counter what he called “hostile forces” against Pyongyang but said the move is not aimed at a war against South Korea or the United States.

Kim made the remarks Monday in a speech at a defense development exhibition to mark the 76th founding anniversary of the ruling Workers’ Party, criticizing Seoul and Washington over their combined military exercises and weapons development.

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N.K. leader urges improvement in people’s living on party’s founding anniversary

SEOUL — North Korean leader Kim Jong-un stressed the need for improving people’s livelihoods, as he held a lecture to mark the 76th founding anniversary of its ruling Workers’ Party, state media said Monday.

He delivered the message during his “important” speech, titled “Let us further improve party work in line with the demands of the period of fresh development of socialist construction,” according to the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

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