North Korea's Kim in public tours after uncle’s execution

North Korea's Kim in public tours after uncle’s execution

SEOUL - Agence France-Presse
North Koreas Kim in public tours after uncle’s execution

Kim gives field guidance to the August 25 Fisheries Station. South Korea warned of possible reckless provocations by Pyongyang after the execution. REUTERS photo

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un spent a whirlwind weekend making public appearances around the country which analysts said were intended to demonstrate his firm grip on power following the shock execution of his uncle.

In an unusual flurry of visits since Dec. 14, the official Korean Central News Agency has reported on Kim’s “field guidance” trips to a military design center, a luxury ski resort and a military fish warehouse as well as attending the wake for a late senior party official. He “couldn’t hold back joy or stop smiling” after being told fish production had grown dramatically this year, KCNA said. The trips came just days after the shock execution of Kim’s powerful uncle and political mentor, Jang Song-thaek.

South Korean President Park Geun-hye yesterday warned of possible “reckless provocations” by North Korea after the execution, calling for the military to step up vigilance.

“Given the latest development in the North, it is uncertain to what direction its political situation would evolve,” Park said.

“We also can’t rule out the possibility of contingencies such as reckless provocations,” Park added, describing the situation on the peninsula “grave and unpredictable.”