MOSCOW (Sputnik) – North Korea changed all three top military officials – minister of People’s Armed Forces, chief of the General Staff and director of the General Political Bureau of the Korean People’s Army – amid preparations for a meeting between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump, media reported on Monday.
Minister of People’s Armed Forces Pak Yong Sik was replaced by First Vice Minister No Kwang Chol, Chief of the General Staff Ri Myong Su by his deputy Ri Yong Gil while and Director of the General Political Bureau of the Korean People’s Army Kim Jong Gak by Army Gen. Kim Su Gil, the Yonhap news agency reported citing its sources.
“The North appears to have brought in new figures amid the changes in inter-Korean relations and the situation on the Korean Peninsulaas the previous officials lacked flexibility in thinking … In particular, No Kwang Chol has been classified as a moderate person,” the source told Yonhap.
The reshuffle reportedly took place in the middle of May.
Tensions on the Korean Peninsula have significantly de-escalated in 2018 with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un having twice met with South Korean President Moon Jae-in. Kim’s meeting with Trump is scheduled for June 12.