North Korea stages huge parade, but holds back on advanced missiles

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As North Korea displayed its military power in a show of force this weekend to mark the founding of the nation, in Japan, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, eyeing an historic extended term, reaffirmed his resolve to revise the nation's post-war, pacifist constitution and said he hoped his party could submit a proposal to parliament later this year.

According to Xinhua news agency, Mr Li said that no matter how the worldwide and regional situation changes, China's firm commitment to the consolidation and development of bilateral ties will not change. "We will both prove everyone wrong!" he tweeted.

Just seven months ago, a similar parade was held in the same square on the eve of the Winter Olympics in neighboring South Korea.

Unlike his predecessor Kim Jong-il, the current North Korean leader has never been to Russian Federation.

Later on Sunday, the celebrations will continue with the opening of what are known as North Korea's Mass Games, a synchronized display of gymnastics and dance performed by tens of thousands of people working in unison. The recently returned remains, mostly bones and other fragments, were flown to Hawaii for analysis and identification.

The parade also provided Kim an opportunity to show off restored ties with his most important ally, China.

In his New Year's message in January, Kim had pledged to celebrate the country's 70th anniversary with "utmost grandness" after declaring the completion of nuclear capability and vowing to shift its focus to economic development.

But on Sunday, almost half of the military parade was devoted to showcasing civilian efforts to build the country's economy, the Associated Press reported.

"China and North Korea, through the three past summits with Kim, opened a new chapter in the development of bilateral relations", Mr Xi said in the letter.

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Leader Kim Jong Un attended the parade but did not address the assembled crowd, which included the head of China's parliament and high-level delegations from countries that have friendly ties with North Korea.

"@FoxNews This is a big and very positive statement from North Korea".

That's a big departure from February's parade, when it displayed its Hwasong-15 intercontinental ballistic missile, believed capable of reaching the US, and a number of other formidable missiles and the erector-launchers used to fire them off from remote locations.

The theme for the celebrations this year was unifying the Korean peninsula, divided since the 1950-53 Korean War. Gen. Michael Minihan, who is chief of staff for United Nations Command and U.S. Forces Korea, and North Korean Lt. Gen.

Mr Kim also referred to the June summit meeting with US President Donald Trump in Singapore, noting that he wants the US side to take action in proportion to North Korean efforts taken in accordance with their agreement in the summit.

And the issue of nuclear-armed North Korea will most likely not be the main topic in Vladivostok, said Andrei Lankov, a historian at Seoul's Kookmin University.

North Korea has invited a large group of foreign journalists to cover a military parade and other events to mark the 70th anniversary of its founding.

The strong emphasis on the economy underscores the strategy Kim has pursued since January of putting economic development front and center. The Arirang Mass Games are an elaborate propaganda spectacle with enormous co-ordinated displays.

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