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Kim Jong Un 'very angry' after inspecting power station

The North Korean leader's passion for economic progress was being expressed in a paradoxical way, a South Korean analyst says.

By
Elizabeth Shim
An undated photo released in June by the official North Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (C) during his visit to Beijing, China (issued June 21, 2018). File Photo by KCNA
An undated photo released in June by the official North Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (C) during his visit to Beijing, China (issued June 21, 2018). File Photo by KCNA

July 17 (UPI) -- Kim Jong Un expressed anger after making a surprise visit to North Korean industrial sites, an unusual move for the leader.

Pyongyang's state-controlled news agency KCNA reported Tuesday Kim scolded his subordinates, pointing out the "incompetence" of economic chiefs, including those in his cabinet and the labor and economic ministry.

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"Chairman Kim was very angry after receiving reports the person in charge of construction at [Orang County hydroelectric power plant] had not checked the site for years," KCNA stated.

"[Kim] had very strong words for the person in charge, someone who is responsible for the national economy, but only stopped by during construction ceremonies, a shameless type of behavior."

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Kim was reportedly on a surprise visit to Orang County when he learned of the supervisor's absence. Kim was also visiting a hotel under construction, a hot springs resort and the Chongjin Bag Factory.

At the factory, Kim complained the site was a "mess," according to state media.

The Orang power plant has been under construction since 1981 but has made little progress for more than 30 years. It is now 70 percent complete.

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Lim Eul-chul, a South Korean analyst at Kyungnam University, said Kim is stepping up his supervision of the economy following trips to China and Singapore, Seoul Shinmun reported Tuesday.

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"It appears Kim was frustrated, after his expectations were raised following trips to China, Singapore," Lim said. "But his passion for economic development may have been expressed paradoxically."

U.S. President Donald Trump has said "a lot of good things are happening" on North Korea, Fox News reported Monday following the summit with Russia's Vladimir Putin.

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"We're doing well with North Korea [so] we have time. There's no rush, it has been going on for many years," Trump told Fox, referring to North Korea's nuclear program.

"The relationship is very good."

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