If the entire nation unites into one in harmony, it will lead just to the national reunification we have wished for. This was a firm creed President Kim Il Sung maintained throughout his lifetime.

From the first day of national division the President wisely led the struggle to achieve the great unity of the nation under the banner of national reunification, and expanded and developed the reunification movement into a nationwide undertaking. He put forward the idea of the great national unity that people of all classes and sections should be firmly united into one by giving priority to the common desire and interest of the nation, regardless of difference in ideology, ideal, political view, religious belief, property status and social standing. And he made every effort to realize the idea.

In Ssuk Islet in the Taedong River in the capital city of Pyongyang there is the Tower of the United Front. It was built in honour of a consultative meeting held in the islet, the meeting Kim Il Sung attended together with the participants in the historic Joint Conference of Representatives of Political Parties and Public Organizations in North and South Korea held from April 19 to 23, 1948. The conference attended by 695 representatives from 56 political parties and public organizations from both sides was aimed at foiling the US imperialists and their stooges’ plot of the “May 10 separate elections” after liberation of Korea and laying a stepping-stone for national reunification.

The Tower of the United Front.

The Tower of the United Front.

In his report to the joint conference Kim Il Sung said that the greatest political task of the Korean nation was to check and frustrate the treacherous separate elections the US imperialists were trying to commit in south Korea, and reunify the country by establishing a unified central government on democratic principles. And he appealed to all those who were concerned about the fate of the country and nation to wage a nationwide struggle in unity, regardless of party affiliation, religious denomination and political view. The conference was a historic national assembly which showed that any difficult, historic cause of the nation could be accomplished if the politicians in the north and the south turned out as one for the sake of the country and nation, although their isms and doctrines were different from one another.

President Kim Il Sung positively led the struggle to realize inter-Korean contacts and travels. In the 1970s there took place various contacts and negotiations including the Red Cross talks and the first high-level talks between the north and the south. In the 1980s, all strata of the nation revitalized their struggle to realize wide-ranging contacts, travels and dialogues for the purpose of achieving the reunification through a new, reasonable federation formula.

Under the wise leadership of the President there were held pan-national rallies involving the north and the south and overseas Koreans. On August 15, 1990 a pan-national rally for peace and reunification of Korea was held splendidly at Panmunjom. Afterwards, there took place a starting ceremony of the Paektu-Halla grand march for reunification, a reunification-oriented football match between the north and the south and a pan-national reunification concert. And a unified team was organized with table tennis players of the north and the south to take part in the World Table Tennis Championships, and female players of the team won its women’s team event. The Pan-National Alliance for Korea’s Reunification (Pomminryon), a standing national united front body, and the Pan-National Alliance of Youth and Students for Korea’s Reunification (Pomchonghangnyon) were formed, and their branch organizations came into being in the north and the south and many regions abroad.

The venue of the opening ceremony of the grand national reunification festival held in 2005 on the 5th anniversary of the publication of the June 15 North-South Joint Declaration.

The venue of the opening ceremony of the grand national reunification festival held in 2005on the 5th anniversary of the publication of the June 15 North-South Joint Declaration.

In the closing days of his life President Kim Il Sung ensured a nationwide dialogue for reunification, and led an inter-Korean dialogue to success, making it possible to adopt an inter-Korean agreement and a joint declaration on denuclearization of the Korean peninsula. He also announced the Ten-Point Programme of the Great Unity of the Whole Nation for the Reunification of the Country, thus rallying the entire nation into a great united front. The President ensured the settlement of the DPRK – USA negotiation and the opening of the north-south high-level talks, and personally met pro-reunification figures of all strata from south Korea, leading them to take the road of reunification. He left his last autograph on a document on reunification of the country.

Chairman Kim Jong Il invariably maintained President Kim Il Sung’s policies on the country’s reunification and made strenuous efforts to draw up the great reunification programmes containing important plans of the great national unity. The Chairman made public Let Us Carry out the Great Leader Comrade Kim Il Sung’s Instructions for National Reunification, Let Us Reunify the Country Independently and Peacefully through the Great Unity of the Entire Nation and other works, in which he formulated the three principles of national reunification, the Ten-Point Programme of the Great Unity of the Whole Nation for the Reunification of the Country and the proposal for founding the Democratic Federal Republic of Koryo as the three charters for reunification, thus clarifying a programmatic guideline to be constantly maintained in the struggle for the national reunification. And the Chairman put forward the five policies of the great national unity to arouse all the fellow countrymen to the struggle for the country’s reunification, laying firmer foundations for the unity of the nation. He made sure that reunification-oriented functions including a pan-national rally took place actively so as to realize the great unity of the entire nation on a more solid basis. He also took measures to enable the fellow countrymen in the north and the south and abroad to meet one another to share compatriotic feelings while freeing themselves from their pent-up sorrow through grand meetings like the pan-national rally. So, the Fifth Pan-National Rally was held with splendour in 1994, and the grand festival for national reunification in 1995 marking the 50th anniversary of liberation of Korea.

With the beginning of the new century the pannational rally, which had been attended by some delegates from headquarters of Pomminryon in the north and the south and abroad, was participated in by delegates of all strata in the north and abroad, and those from political parties and organizations of south Korea including the ruling and opposition parties, and non-governmental delegates from the south. A committee for preparation of joint functions in the north and the south and abroad for implementation of the June 15 Joint Declaration was organized. It was aimed at embodying the June 15 Joint Declaration adopted in the north-south summit talks held for the first time in the history of the national division. As a nationwide reunification movement organization embracing figures of political parties and social organizations of all strata in the north and the south and abroad, the committee served as a powerful motive force for unifying the nation’s aspiration for and intention of reunification.

The north-south joint struggle of different classes and strata for independent reunification newly started as part of the nationwide reunification movement. As a result, a number of functions were held such as reunification rallies of workers, peasants, youth and students, and women in the north and south of Korea, a national writers’ rally, and the annual function for joint commemoration of the National Foundation Day at the Mausoleum of King Tangun. People from all walks of life in the north and the south took those opportunities to travel between both sides by air and sea.

Chairman Kim Jong Il was so broad-minded as to warmly welcome Jong Ju Yong, one of magnates in south Korea, and other figures of the economic, press and religious circles in the south, leading them all to the road of patriotism. The Chairman, who had always aspired to realize the great unity of the nation, tolerated whoever regretted his mistake and came over to the side of the nation, even though he had committed a crime before the nation in the past, and lavished great love and trust on him. Kim Jong Il’s noble idea of the great national unity, outstanding leadership and warm love for the nation, helped further expand and develop the national reunification movement into a nationwide one.

A joint conference of the DPRK government, political parties and public organizations in June 2016.

A joint conference of the DPRK government, politicalparties and public organizations in June 2016.

The President and the Chairman’s idea of the great national unity is now brilliantly carried forward by Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un. In his New Year Address for 2017 the Supreme Leader said that all the Korean people in the north, in the south and abroad should achieve solidarity, make concerted efforts and unite on the principle of subordinating everything to national reunification, the common cause of the nation, and revitalize the reunification movement on a nationwide scale.

Today the Korean people are turning out as one to make this year a meaningful year in which they will open a new phase for independent reunification by stepping up a nationwide grand march towards reunification through the concerted efforts of the nation, under the wise leadership of the Supreme Leader.

Article by Ri Jong Nam