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NORTH KOREA NEWSLETTER NO. 103 (April 22, 2010)
*** CHRONOLOGICAL REVIEW

SEOUL (Yonhap) -- The following is a chronological review of major developments related to North Korea between April 15-21.

  
April
15 Floral baskets are laid before statues of President Kim Il-sung in different parts of the country on the occasion of the Day of the Sun, or the 98th anniversary of the late leader's birth.

   15 The (North) Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) says Kim Jong-il received a letter from the Central Standing Committee of the General Association of Korean Residents in Japan (Chongryon) on the occasion of the Day of the Sun.

   15 Leading newspapers call for successfully accomplishing the cause of building a thriving nation as initiated by President Kim Il-sung on the occasion of the Day of the Sun.

   15 The KCNA says Kim Jong-il attended a concert given by Unhasu Orchestra and other national art troupes on the occasion of the Day of the Sun.

   15 Kim Yong-nam, president of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly (SPA), and Premier Kim Yong-il send a message of sympathy to Chinese President Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao over an earthquake that hit Qinghai Province causing massive loss of life and property.

   15 A reception is given for a group of Chinese tourists on a visit to the DPRK (North Korea) by the State General Bureau of Tourism at Yanggakdo International Hotel in Pyongyang.

   15 The DPRK government gives a reception at Pyongyang Koryo Hotel in honor of visiting delegations from organizations focused on the study of the Juche idea on the occasion of the Day of the Sun.

   16 The KCNA says Kim Jong-il sends a congratulatory message to Bashar Al-Assad, regional secretary of the Baath Arab Socialist Party and president of Syria, on the occasion of the 64th anniversary of Syria's independence.

   16 Kim Yong-nam sends a congratulatory message to Bashar Al-Assad, president of Syria, on the occasion of the 64th anniversary of its independence.

   16 The KCNA says Kim Jong-il received a gift from the Mongolian delegation for commemorating the Day of the Sun.

   17 The KCNA says Kim Jong-il viewed a performance given by the Song and Dance Ensemble of the (North) Korean People's Interior Forces.

   17 Rodong Sinmun says U.S. forces are mulling improving B-61 nuclear bombs, which could spark a new nuclear arms race.

   17 North Korea accuses Seoul of trumping up the North's involvement in the sinking of a South Korean naval vessel, which it says is prompted by ulterior motives of distracting the public from an internal crisis of "state management failure."

   17 The 12th Kimilsungia Festival opened on April 12 at the Kimilsungia-Kimjongilia Exhibition in Pyongyang to commemorate the Day of the Sun.

   17 A concert for commemorating the Day of the Sun is given by the Unhasu Orchestra and other national art troupes.

   17 The KCNA says Kim Jong-il gave field guidance to workers at the Huichon Power Station now under construction.

   18 The KCNA says Kim Jong-il watched a performance given by an art squad of the (North) Korean People's Army (KPA) Unit 10215 on the occasion of the Day of the Sun and a performance for the Second April Spring People's Art Festival.
19 Rodong Sinmun calls on South Korea to cease confrontational statements against the DPRK that could ignite a nuclear war of aggression.

   19 An agreement on friendship, exchange and cooperation is signed between Nampho City of the DPRK and Esmeraldas City in Ecuador.

   19 A delegation of the University of Damascus of Syria led by Sameer Ismaeel, director of the Strategic Studies and Research Center, flies into Pyongyang.

   19 Asghar Rezaeipour, military attache to the Iranian embassy in Pyongyang, hosts a reception at the Taedong River Diplomatic Corps Club in Pyongyang to mark Iran's Day of the Army.

   19 A meeting is held at the Central Hall of Workers in Pyongyang to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the April 19 Popular Uprising of the South Korean people.

   19 The 12th Kimilsungia Festival closes with due ceremony at the Kimilsungia-Kimjongilia Exhibition.

   20 Kim Yong-nam sends a congratulatory message to Evo Morales Aima, president of Bolivia, as regards the World Conference of Peoples to be held in Bolivia.

   20 The KCNA says Choe Pyong-gwan is appointed as DPRK ambassador to China, according to a decree of the SPA Presidium.

   20 Gombojab Zandanshatar, minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Mongolia, and his party arrive in Pyongyang.

   20 Kim Yong-nam receives credentials from Jaafar Alj Hakim, Moroccan ambassador to the DPRK, at Mansudae Assembly Hall in Pyongyang.

   20 Talks between Pak Ui-chun, minister of Foreign Affairs of the DPRK, and Gombojab Zandanshatar, minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Mongolia, take place at Mansudae Assembly Hall.

   20 Choe Thae-bok, chairman of the Supreme People's Assembly of the DPRK, meets with Gombojab Zandanshatar, minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Mongolia, who paid a courtesy call on him at Mansudae Assembly Hall.

   20 A delegation of the Cuban Revolutionary Armed Forces led by Alvaro Lopez Miera, its vice minister and chief of the General Staff, flies into Pyongyang.

   20 The KPA General Staff hosts a reception in honor of the visiting delegation of the Cuban Revolutionary Armed Forces.

   20 The KCNA says Kim Jong-il was presented with a gift by Alvaro Lopez Miera, vice minister and chief of the General Staff of the Cuban Revolutionary Armed Forces of Cuba, on a visit to the DPRK.

   20 Foreign Minister Pak Ui-chun sends a congratulatory message to Henry Odein Ajumogobia upon his appointment as foreign minister of Nigeria.

   21 Rodong Sinmun says the United States, "the world's worst human rights abuser," is arbitrarily taking issue with 'human rights records' in other countries as if it were a 'human rights judge.'

   21 Pak Ui-chun meets with Jaafar Alj Hakim, Moroccan ambassador newly accredited to the DPRK.

   21 A delegation of the Foreign Ministry of Iran led by Vice-Minister Mohammad Ali Fathollahi flies into Pyongyang.

   21 A national symposium on medical science is held at the Grand People's Study House in Pyongyang to observe the 25th anniversary of the publication of Kim Jong-il's work, On the Further Improvement of the Health Service.

   21 Rodong Sinmun blames South Korea for the near collapse of tours to Mt. Kumgang, saying the South Korean 'puppet regime' has abused the tour issue to advance its 'sinister purpose' of escalating confrontation with the DPRK.

   21 North Korea's foreign ministry says the country will manufacture as many nukes as it deems necessary but will neither participate in a nuclear arms race nor produce more than it feels necessary.

   21 Talks are held in Pyongyang between the delegations of the KPA and the Cuban Revolutionary Armed Forces.

   21 Palestinian Ambassador to the DPRK Ismail Ahmed Mohamed Hasan gives a reception at his embassy on the occasion of the Day of the Sun.

   21 A memorandum of understanding on the development of cooperation in economy and trade between Rason Municipality of the DPRK and the Ministry of Road, Transport, Construction and City Management of Mongolia is signed in Rason.

  (END)