North Korean communist leaders have changed the 10 “fundamental principles” of the ruling Worker’s Party to say that North Korea and the Worker’s Party will be “kept alive forever” by the bloodline of the country’s founder Kim Il Sung, South Korea’s Chosun Ilbo newspaper reported
The story, reported in the South China Morning Post, said that the new rules will be “kept alive forever by the Baekdu bloodline” — a reference to the Kim family, which has ruled the country since its founding in 1948.
Kim Il Sung ruled for 46 years until his death in 1994. His son Kim Jong Il ruled for 17 years, until he died in 2011 and was succeeded by his son Kim Jong Un.
According to the Chosun Ilbo account, the revisions are aimed at helping the younger Kim in his efforts to consolidate his rule.
The changes warn against strengthening the power of the bourgeoisie, an apparent reference to the influence of neighboring South Korea, a multiparty democracy, and China, a less repressive communist state.
The changes, however, are unlikely to have much of an impact on daily lives of North Koreans, most of whom live in squalor and lack the personal and political freedom enjoyed by their South Korean neighbors.
Kim Jong Un’s succession as the country’s “supreme leader” has “had no positive impact on the country’s dire human rights record,” according to Human Rights Watch
“More than 200,000 North Koreans, including children, are imprisoned in camps where many perish from forced labor, inadequate food, and abuse by guards. Arbitrary arrest, lack of due process, and torture are pervasive problems," the group said. "There is no independent media, functioning civil society, or religious freedom. Government policies have continually subjected North Koreans to food shortages and famine.”
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