North Korea replaces hard-line defense minister
FILE - In this April 23, 2007 file photo released by Korean Central News Agency via Korea News Service in Tokyo, Gen. Kim Kyok Sik, right, stands with then-North Korean leader Kim Jong Il during the leader's inspection of Korean People's Army Unit 1637 at an undisclosed location in North Korea. North Korea replaced hard-line defense chief Kim Kyok Sik with little-known army general Jang Jong Nam. Mention of Jang's new role was buried Monday, May 13, 2013 in a state media dispatch listing those who attended an art performance with leader Kim Jong Un. (AP Photo/Korean Central News Agency via Korea News Service, File)
Posted: Monday, May 13, 2013 12:00 am
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) - North Korea has replaced its hard-line defense minister with a little-known army general, according to a state media report Monday, in what outside analysts call an attempt to install a younger figure meant to solidify leader Kim Jong Un's grip on the powerful military.
Jang Jong Nam's appointment is the latest move since Kim succeeded his late father in late 2011 that observers see as a young leader trying to consolidate control. The announcement comes amid easing animosities after weeks of warlike threats between the rivals, including North Korean vows of nuclear strikes.
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Monday, May 13, 2013 12:00 am.