(Seoul) North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has appointed his sister and adviser as the country’s top executive, state news agency KCNA said on Thursday.
Kim Yo-jong, a close adviser to her brother, has been promoted to member of the State Affairs Committee, serving as the Executive Registration Chamber of Parliament, in the wake of a series of changes approved by the Supreme People’s Assembly.
Less than nine members of the commission have been fired, including vice chairman, Pak Pang Xu and diplomat Cho Son Hui, one of the few women to hold the highest office in the North Korean hierarchy and have played a key role in negotiations with the United States.
The official Rodong Sinmun newspaper on Thursday published portraits of eight new members, including Kim Yoo Jong as the only woman and her youth.
She often appears close to her brother, who studied with her in Switzerland, especially during the summits with then US President Donald Trump and South Korean President Moon Jae-in.
Its exact political role has long been the subject of speculation. She is sometimes given to her brother as heir apparent, which makes her the first female leader of this social conservative country.
She was noted for making statements specifically against Washington or Seoul, especially the upstream of the Pyongyang destruction of the liaison office north of the border, built by the South and financially aided.
However, the significance of these statements remained uncertain as she had a relatively low position as Deputy Director of the Workers’ Party Central Committee, and she sometimes stated that she was speaking on her behalf.
The official rank of the 34-year-old has fluctuated over time, but her new position in the State Affairs Commission is very senior.