DLP and the The Korean Social Democratic Party
|To remind those who have been erroneously thinking that DPRK is a one-party state, the representatives of the Democratic Labor Party (DLP) of Republic of Korea are at the moment visiting DPRK on the invitation by the Social Democratic Party of Korea (Chosôn Sahoeminjudang; no web site).|
And I thought Kyunghyang Sinmun was a paper that could call spade a spade as far as DPRK is concerned, but in this editorial they praise the visit by DLP as opening a new era in the South-North exchanges, recalling Kim Ku's words regardig the pan-Korean assembly of parties and associations in Pyongyang in April 1948 before the establishment of separate governments. Well, perhaps Kyunghyang really thinks that DLP is dealing with a real party. In another article they inform that the Korean Social Democratic Party is "allied (udang 友黨) with the Workers' Party (Rodongdang) and the sole opposition party (yadang) in North Korea." Perhaps this extraordinary feat is possible in DPRK. Their social democracy has truly its own characteristics.
Sure I understand the predicament of DLP as well; that's the invitation they get (or managed to get) and that's what they'll have to accept if they're going to go to North.
Here's some info from a DPRK site:
The Korean Social Democratic Party
I'll have to contact the SDP here and encourage them to follow DLP at once.
The word in the DLP party member notice board is that they'd be bringing a bus as a present for their hosts.
Update, August 25, 2005.
Daily NK tells, quoting Hwang Jang-yeop and an unnamed fomer party official, that the Korean Social Democratic Party is another name for an office in the exchange division (kyoryuguk) of the unification bureau (t'ongil chônsônbu) of the Workers Party.
Update, October 24, 2005.
Link to Andrei Lankov's article The Demise of Non-Communist Parties in North Korea (1945-1960), Journal of Cold War Studies 3:1 (2001), 103-125. (Institutional subscription to the database needed for the access, I guess.)