Kim Jong Un discussed relations with South Korea during a party meeting Tuesday, according to state media Wednesday. File Photo by KCNA/UPI | License Photo
Feb. 10 (UPI) -- Kim Jong Un ordered his subordinates in charge of South Korea and other "external affairs" to "thoroughly implement" projects, a month after the North Korean leader said the future of inter-Korean ties depends on Seoul.
North Korean state television KCTV reported Wednesday that Kim mentioned inter-Korean affairs for the first time on the second day of the plenary meeting of the Workers' Party's 8th Central Committee, but provided few details.
Kim "provided a clear picture of the future of the South Korea policy and foreign affairs division [of government] and emphasized the need to thoroughly implement policy without a single mistake," the North Korean state broadcaster said.
The rare statement from Pyongyang's media comes at a time the North has declined to engage with Seoul amid the coronavirus pandemic.
According to Yonhap TV in the South, the statement might mean the North could return to a dialogue, or express its displeasure with Seoul and Washington with provocations.
North Korean state media reports on the second day of the meeting did not mention weapons development, a highlight of the Eighth Party Congress.
Last month, Kim had said the regime was developing hypersonic missiles and nuclear-powered submarines. On Tuesday, Party paper Rodong Sinmun reported Kim discussed agriculture and the economy.
In his speech Kim reportedly said the success or failure of farming in North Korea "depends on national policy," while focusing on domestic "control functions."
North Korea called the United States its "biggest enemy" in January. The Biden administration has not responded directly to the comment.
U.S. State Department spokesman Ned Price said Tuesday that the administration will begin a "thorough policy review of the state of play in North Korea" in coordination with allies in the region.
"Our focus in formulating this new policy and approach and undertaking these consultations will be on reducing the threat to the United States and our allies, as well as improving the lives of the North and the South Korean people," Price said.