North Korea Appoints New Leaders

800px-Flag_of_North_Korea.svgA new Premier and Vice Chairman of the National Defense Commission were appointed Monday, June 7, by North Korea‘s Supreme People’s Assembly.

Choe Yong-rim, 81, became the 12th Prime Minister of North Korea (coat of arms pictured) replacing Kim Yong-il who was in position since 2007. Choe is a long-time friend of Supreme Leader Kim Jong-il. Choe is the chief secretary of the Pyongyang branch of the Workers Party of Korea (WPK). WPK is the ruling party in the nation.

The post of Premier is, however, largely ceremonial.

Kim Yong-il was said to have been fired due to the currency reform he implemented late last year.

Meanwhile, a brother-in-law of Kim Jong-il, Chang Sung-Taek, 64, has been appointed as Vice Chairman of the National Defense Commission.

The National Defense Commission is the highest governing body in the country. The 1998 Constitution of North Korea describes it as “the highest guiding organ of the military and the managing organ of military matters.” The current Chairman is Kin Jong-il.