North Korea preparing major military parade to mark party meeting
North Korea is preparing its largest-ever military parade to coincide with a rare conference of the ruling party, South Korean intelligence sources said Sunday, dpa reported.
Yonhap news agency quoted several sources saying that Pyongyang has been drilling as many as 10,000 soldiers for the parade that is expected to showcase missiles, artillery and armoured vehicles.
"Judging from the current preparations, it is likely to be a large-scale event different from previous years," one source who monitors North Korea affairs told the agency.
The Workers' Party plans to hold a conference of representatives on Tuesday to appoint leadership posts, expected to include a key position for Kim Jong-un, the youngest son and presumptive heir of ailing leader Kim Jong-il.
North Korea will also celebrate the 65th anniversary of the nation's founding on October 10.
"We are not in the stage yet to talk specifically about equipment but missile-related equipment is on display," another intelligence source said.
A North Korean defector, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said about 5,000 troops usually take part in the military parades, Yonhap reported.
"Given the scale of the event this time, however, chances are high that it will be arranged by the National Defense Commission and attended by Kim Jong-il," he said.