Pyongyang remains calm as major party conference looms

18:18, September 07, 2010      

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Pyongyang citizens attend a celebration ceremony rehearsal for the upcoming Conference of Workers' Party of Korea (WPK) in Pyongyang, capital of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), Sept. 5, 2010. The Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the WPK has announced that a conference of the WPK will be held in early September to elect its highest leading body. (Xinhua/Gao Haorong)

As the world media were busy making all sorts of speculation about the coming conference of the ruling Workers' Party of Korea (WPK), the first of its kind in 44 years, the capital city remained calm as usual on Tuesday.

Touring the city, Xinhua reporters could see no signs of any impending big event despite the great significance given to the conference, which, according to a June 23 decision by the Politburo of the Central Committee of the WPK, will be held in early September to make major decisions on high-level appointments.

This conference is required by the new needs of the development of the WPK and revolution when the country's Juche revolutionary cause and the endeavor to build a powerful socialist nation has entered a decisive era, said the WPK decision.

Rodong Sinmun, WPK's official daily newspaper, reported Monday that party delegates were still coming from all parts of the country to Pyongyang.

According to the charter of the WPK, delegates will discuss and decide the routes, policies and personnel changes of the party during the WPK conference.

After a few days of rain, sunny weather returned to Pyongyang on Tuesday. As no traffic restriction was imposed, Xinhua reporters reached the Kim Il Sung Square fairly quickly.

At the square, hundreds of teenagers with red silk fabric in hand were rehearsing group performance to the word command given by loudspeakers. This is part of the preparation for the celebration of the country's 62nd birthday.

Near the square, the First Department Store of Pyongyang was open as usual. There were many customers both inside and outside the store.

Beside the fountain in front of the Mansudae Artistic Theater, a young man sat there reading a book and took notes from time to time. Dozens of middle-aged women sat by the roadside, discussing something with red-covered notebooks in their hands.

Asked about what they were talking about, a woman gave no answer.

Near the theater, the Mansudae Assembly Hall, venue for important conferences, remained quiet with few cars parked nearby. It doesn't look like that any major conference was going on inside. A red banner that read "Marking the 62th anniversary of the founding of our motherland" was hung across its facade.

At a scenic spot by the Taedong River, some people were strolling leisurely. An old man was walking along the river with his little grandchild. A young mother was teasing her baby with a handkerchief. Voices of reading and singing from the nearby Kim Jong Ju primary school could be heard.

National flags were fluttering on street lampposts, and gardeners could be seen pruning the lawn along the street.

Over the past few days, media across the country gave heavy coverage to recent meetings at provincial, city and county levels all over the nation to elect delegates to the party conference.

Source: Xinhua


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