Socialist Constitution of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (1998)

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For works with similar titles, see Constitution of North Korea.
Socialist Constitution of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea  (1998) 

This is the version of the Socialist Constitution of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, that was adopted on 27 December 1972 at the 1st session of the 5th Supreme People's Assembly, and amended on 9 April 1992 at the 3rd session of the 9th Supreme People's Assembly, and on 5 September 1998 at the 1st session of the 10th Supreme People's Assembly.

Preamble[edit]

The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea is the socialist motherland of Juche where the ideas and leadership of the great Comrade Kim Il Sung are applied.

The great Comrade Kim Il Sung is the founder of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and the father of socialist Korea.

Comrade Kim Il Sung authored the immortal Juche idea and, by organizing and leading the anti-Japanese revolutionary struggle under its banner, created the glorious revolutionary traditions and achieved the historic cause of national restoration, and founded the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea based on the solid foundations for the construction of an independent and sovereign State in the political, economic, cultural and military fields.

Comrade Kim Il Sung strengthened and developed the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea into a masses-centered socialist country and an independent, self-sufficient and self-defensive socialist State by putting forward Juche-oriented revolutionary lines and wisely leading the various stages of social revolution and construction work.

Comrade Kim Il Sung elucidated the fundamental principles governing the building and activities of the State, established the most superior State and social system, mode of politics, and system and methods for social administration, and created solid foundations for the prosperity of the socialist motherland and for the inheritance and completion of the revolutionary cause of Juche.

Comrade Kim Il Sung, regarding “the people is heaven” as his maxim, was always with the people and devoted his whole life for the people, and turned the whole society into one large family that is united in one mind by taking care of and leading the people through their noble and benevolent politics.

The great leader Comrade Kim Il Sung is the sun of the nation and the lodestar of national reunification. Comrade Kim Il Sung regarded the reunification of the country as the national task and devoted all their efforts and care for its realization. Comrade Kim Il Sung opened the way for completing the cause of national reunification through the united efforts of the whole nation by setting out the fundamental principle and ways of achieving national reunification and developing the movement for national reunification into a nationwide movement while turning the Republic into a powerful bastion for national reunification.

The great leader Comrade Kim Il Sung clarified the basic ideals of the foreign policy of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and expanded and developed the country’s foreign relations based on these, and highly demonstrated the international prestige of the Republic. Comrade Kim Il Sung pioneered a new era of independence, conducted energetic activities for strengthening and developing the socialist and the non-aligned movement and for world peace and friendship among peoples, and made an immortal contribution to the cause of human independence as a veteran of world politics.

Comrade Kim Il Sung was a genius of ideological theory and leadership art, an ever-victorious iron-willed brilliant commander, a great revolutionary and statesman, and a great man.

The great ideas and achievements in leadership of Comrade Kim Il Sung are the lasting treasures of the Korean revolution and the basic guarantee for the prosperity of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and the Korean people, under the leadership of the Workers’ Party of Korea, will uphold the great leader Comrade Kim Il Sung as the eternal President of the Republic, and will complete the revolutionary cause of Juche to the end by defending and carrying forward the ideas and achievements of Comrade Kim Il Sung.

The Socialist Constitution of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea is the Kim Il Sung Constitution that codifies the Juche-oriented ideas and achievements of the great leader Comrade Kim Il Sung in State building.

Chapter 1. Politics[edit]

Article 1. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea is an independent socialist State representing the interests of all the Korean people.

Article 2. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea is a revolutionary State which has inherited the brilliant traditions formed during the glorious revolutionary struggle against the imperialist aggressors and in the struggle to achieve the liberation of the homeland and the freedom and happiness of the people.

Article 3. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea is guided in its activities by the Juche idea, a world outlook centered on people and a revolutionary ideology for achieving the independence of the masses of people.

Article 4.The sovereignty of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea resides in the workers, peasants, working intellectuals and all other working people. The working people exercise power through their representative organs―the Supreme People's Assembly and local People's Assemblies at all levels.

Article 5. All State organs in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea are formed and function on the principle of democratic centralism.

Article 6. The organs of State power at all levels, from the county People's Assembly to the Supreme People's Assembly, are elected on the principle of universal, equal and direct suffrage by secret ballot.

Article 7. Deputies to the organs of State power at all levels have close ties with their electors and are accountable to them for their work. The electors may recall the deputies they have elected in the case of loss of confidence.

Article 8. The social system of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea is a people-centered system under which the working people are the masters of everything and everything in society serves the working people. The State defends and protects the interests of the workers, peasants, working intellectuals and all other working people who have been freed from exploitation and oppression and become masters of the State and society.

Article 9. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea strives to achieve the complete victory of socialism in the northern half of Korea by strengthening the people's power and vigorously performing the three revolutions in ideology, technology and culture, and reunify the country on the principle of independence, peaceful reunification and great national unity.

Article 10. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea rests on the political and ideological unity of all the people based on the alliance of workers and peasants led by the working class. The State revolutionizes all the members of society, and assimilate them to the working class by intensifying the ideological revolution, and turns the whole of society into a collective that is united in a comradely way.

Article 11. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea conducts all activities under the leadership of the Workers' Party of Korea.

Article 12. The State adheres to the class line, strengthens the dictatorship of people's democracy and firmly defends the people's power and socialist system against all subversive acts of hostile elements at home and abroad.

Article 13. The State implements the mass line and apply the Chongsanri spirit and Chongsanri method to all its activities, the spirit and method by which superiors assist their subordinates, mix with the masses to find solutions to problems and arouse them to conscious enthusiasm preferentially through political work, work with people.

Article 14. The State powerfully conducts the Three-Revolution Red Flag Movement and other mass movements and accelerates the building of socialism to the maximum.

Article 15. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea champions the democratic national rights of Koreans overseas and their rights recognized by the international law as well as their interests.

Article 16. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea guarantees the legal rights and interests of foreigners in its territory.

Article 17. Independence, peace and friendship are the basic ideals of the foreign policy and the principles of external activities of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. The State establishes diplomatic as well as political, economic and cultural relations with all friendly countries, on principles of complete equality, independence, mutual respect, noninterference in each other's affairs and mutual benefit. The State promotes unity with the world public defending independence, and resolutely supports and encourages the struggle of all peoples who oppose all forms of aggression and interference and fight for their countries' independence and national and class emancipation.

Article 18. The law of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea reflects the wishes and interests of the working people and is a basic instrument for State administration. Respect for the law and its strict adherence and execution is the duty of all institutions, enterprises, organizations and citizens. The State perfects the system of socialist law and promotes the socialist law-abiding life.

Chapter 2. Economy[edit]

Article 19. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea relies on the socialist production relations and on the foundation of an independent national economy.

Article 20. In the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the means of production are owned by the State and social, cooperative organizations.

Article 21. The property of the State belongs to the entire people. There is no limit to the property which the State can own. All natural resources of the country, railways, air transport service and communications establishments, as well as major factories and enterprises, ports and banks are owned solely by the State. The State protects and develops on a preferential basis State property playing the leading role in the economic development of the country.

Article 22. The property of social cooperative organizations is collectively owned by the working people involved in the organizations concerned. Land, farm machines, ships, as well as small and medium-size factories and enterprises may be owned by social cooperative organizations. The State protects the property of social, cooperative organizations.

Article 23. The State enhances the ideological consciousness and the technical and cultural level of the peasants, increase the role of the property of the entire people in leading the cooperative property so as to combine the two forms of property in an organic way, consolidates and develops the socialist cooperative economic system by improving the guidance and management of the cooperative economy and gradually transforms the property of cooperative organizations into the property of the people as a whole based on the voluntary will of all their members.

Article 24. Private property is property owned and consumed by individual citizens. Private property is derived from socialist distribution according to work done and from fringe benefits granted by the State and society. The products of individual sideline activities including those from the kitchen gardens, as well as the income from other legal economic activities are also private property. The State protects private property and guarantees the right to inherit it by law.

Article 25. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea regards the steady improvement of the material and cultural standards of the people as the supreme principle of its activities. The increasing material wealth of society in our country, where taxes have been abolished, is used entirely to promote the well-being of the workers. The State provides all workers with every condition for obtaining food, clothing and housing.

Article 26. The independent national economy in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea is a solid foundation for the people's happy socialist life and for the country's prosperity. The State, adhering to the socialist line of building an independent national economy, endeavors to promote the national economy onto a Juche-oriented, modern and scientific basis so as to make the national economy highly developed, Juche-oriented economy and builds material and technical foundations commensurate with a completely socialist society.

Article 27. The technical revolution is a basic link for developing the socialist economy. The State conducts all economic activities giving primary preference to technical development, pushes ahead with scientific and technical development and the technical renovation of the national economy and vigorously launches the mass technical innovation movement so as to free the working people from difficult, tiresome labor and to narrow down the distinctions between physical and mental labor.

Article 28. The State industrializes and modernizes agriculture through the rural technical revolution and improves the role of the county and its guidance and assistance to rural areas in order to eliminate the difference between town and country and the class distinction between workers and peasants. The State undertakes, at its own expense, the building of production facilities for the cooperative farms and modern houses in the countryside.

Article 29. Socialism and communism are built by the creative labor of the working people. Labor in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea is the independent and creative labor of the working people, freed from exploitation and oppression. The State renders the labor of our working people, who do not worry about unemployment, more joyful and worthwhile, so that they willingly work with enthusiasm and creativeness for society, the collective and themselves.

Article 30. The working day is eight hours. The length of the working day is reduced by the State in arduous trades and other special categories of work. The State guarantees that the working hours are fully utilized through proper organization of labor and enforcement of labor discipline.

Article 31. In the Democratic People's Republic of Korea the minimum working age is 16 years. The State prohibits the employment of children under the minimum working age.

Article 32. The State firmly adheres to the principle of properly combining political guidance with economic and technical guidance, the unified guidance of the State with the creativeness of each unit, unitary direction with democracy, political and moral incentive with material incentive in the guidance and management of the socialist economy.

Article 33. The State directs and manages the national economy through the Taean work system, a socialist form of economic management whereby the economy is operated and managed scientifically and rationally on the basis of collective effort of the producer masses, and through the system of agricultural guidance whereby agricultural management is conducted by industrial methods. The State enforces the self-financing system in economic management to meet the requirements of the Taean work system and makes proper use of such economic levers as cost, price and profit.

Article 34. The national economy of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea is a planned economy. The State draws up and implements the plans for the development of the people's economy in accordance with the laws of socialist economic development so that the balance of accumulation and consumption can be maintained correctly, economic construction accelerated, the people's living standard steadily raised and the national defense strengthened. The State ensures a high rate of growth in production and a balanced development of the people's economy by implementing unified and detailed planning.

Article 35. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea compiles and implements the State budget according to the plan for the development of the people's economy. The State systematically increases its accumulations and expands and develops socialist property by intensifying the campaign for increased production and greater economy, and by exercising strict financial control in all spheres.

Article 36. Foreign trade in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea is conducted by the State or social cooperative organizations. The State develops foreign trade on the principles of complete equality and mutual benefit.

Article 37. The State encourages institutions, enterprises and organizations in our country to joint ventures and cooperation of enterprise with foreign corporations and individuals as well as the establishment and operation of a variety of enterprise in special economic zones.

Article 38. The State pursues a tariff policy to protect the independent national economy.

Chapter 3. Culture[edit]

Article 39. Socialist culture, which is flourishing and developing in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, contributes to the improvement of the creative ability of all the people and to meeting their sound cultural and aesthetic demands.

Article 40. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea, by carrying out a thorough cultural revolution, trains all the people to be builders of socialism and communism equipped with a profound knowledge of nature and society and a high level of culture and technology, and makes the whole society intellectual.

Article 41. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea develops a truly popular, revolutionary culture which serves the socialist working people. In building a socialist national culture, the State opposes the cultural infiltration of imperialism and any tendency to return to the past, protects its national cultural heritage, and develops it in keeping with the existing socialist situation.

Article 42. The State eliminates the way of life inherited from the outmoded society and establishes a new socialist way of life in every sphere.

Article 43. The State puts the principles of socialist education into practice and raises the new generation to be steadfast revolutionaries who will fight for society and the people and to be people of a new communist type who are knowledgeable, morally sound and physically healthy.

Article 44. The State gives precedence to public education and the training of cadres for the nation and combines general education with technological education, and education with productive labor.

Article 45. The State develops universal compulsory eleven-year education which includes a compulsory one-year preschool education at a high level in accordance with the trend of modern science and technology and the practical requirements of socialist construction.

Article 46. The State trains competent technicians and experts by enhancing the regular educational system as well as different forms of study while working, and by improving the scientific and theoretical levels of technical education and education on social science and basic science.

Article 47. The State provides education to all students free of charge and grants allowances to students of universities and colleges.

Article 48. The State strengthens social education and provides the working people with all available conditions for study.

Article 49. The State maintains all children of preschool age in nurseries and kindergartens at State and public expense.

Article 50. The State establishes Juche in scientific research, introduces advanced science and technology in every possible way, opens up new areas of science and technology and raises the country's science and technology to the world level.

Article 51. The State elaborates a correct plan to develop science and technology, sets up a strict discipline to implement it, and strengthens creative cooperation among scientists, technicians and producers.

Article 52. The State develops a Juche-oriented, revolutionary art and literature, national in form and socialist in content. The State encourages creative workers and artists to produce works of high ideological and artistic value and enlists the masses widely in literary and artistic activity.

Article 53. The State provides sufficient modern cultural facilities to meet the demands of the people who want to continually improve themselves, both mentally and physically, so that the working people may enjoy a socialist cultured, aesthetic life to their hearts' content.

Article 54. The State safeguards our language from all attempts to obliterate it and develops it to meet present-day needs.

Article 55. The State thoroughly prepares the people for work and national defense by popularizing physical culture and sport and making it their daily regime, and augments sporting skills to meet our country's reality and the trend in modern sporting skills.

Article 56. The State protects people's lives and improve the workers' health by consolidating and developing the system of universal free medical service and improving the district doctor system and the system of preventive medicine.

Article 57. The State adopts measures to protect the environment in preference to production, preserves and promotes the natural environment and prevents environmental pollution so as to provide the people with a hygienic environment and working conditions.

Chapter 4. National Defense[edit]

Article 58. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea rests on the people's nationwide defense system.

Article 59. The mission of the armed forces of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea is to safeguard the interests of the working people, to defend the socialist system and the gains of the revolution from aggression and to protect the freedom, independence and peace of the country.

Article 60. The State implements the line of self-reliant defense, the foundation of which is to train the entire army into a cadre army, modernize the entire army, arm the entire people and fortify the entire country on the basis of equipping the army and the people politically and ideologically.

Article 61. The State strengthens military and mass discipline in the army and promote the display of the noble traditional trait of unity between officers and men and unity between the army and the people.

Chapter 5. Fundamental Rights and Duties of Citizens[edit]

Article 62. The terms for becoming a citizen of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea are defined by the Law on Nationality. A citizen is under the protection of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea regardless of the domicile.

Article 63. In the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the rights and duties of citizens are based on the collectivist principle “one for all and all for one.”

Article 64. The State effectively guarantees genuine democratic rights and liberties as well as the material and cultural well-being of all its citizens. In the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the rights and freedom of citizens is amplified with the consolidation and development of the socialist system.

Article 65. Citizens enjoy equal rights in all spheres of State and public activity.

Article 66. All citizens who have reached the age of 17 have the right to elect and to be elected, irrespective of sex, race, occupation, length of residence, property status, education, party affiliation, political views or religion. Citizens serving in the army also have the right to elect and to be elected. A person who has been disenfranchised by a Court decision and a person legally certified insane do not have the right to elect or to be elected.

Article 67. Citizens are guaranteed freedom of speech, of the press, of assembly, demonstration and association. The State guarantees conditions for the free activity of democratic political parties and social organizations.

Article 68. Citizens have freedom of religious beliefs. This right is granted by approving the construction of religious buildings and the holding of religious ceremonies. Religion must not be used as a pretext for drawing in foreign forces or for harming the State and social order.

Article 69. Citizens are entitled to submit complaints and petitions. The State fairly investigates and deal with complaints and petitions as fixed by law.

Article 70. Citizens have the right to work. All able-bodied citizens choose occupations in accordance with their wishes and skills and are provided with stable jobs and working conditions. Citizens work according to their abilities and are paid in accordance with the quantity and quality of their work.

Article 71. Citizens have the right to relaxation. This right is ensured by the establishment of the working hours, the provision of holidays, paid leave, accommodation at health resorts and holiday homes at State expense and by a growing network of cultural facilities.

Article 72. Citizens are entitled to free medical care, and all persons who are no longer able to work because of old age, illness or a physical disability, the old and children who have no means of support are all entitled to material assistance. This right is ensured by free medical care, an expanding network of hospitals, sanatoria and other medical institutions, State social insurance and other social security systems.

Article 73. Citizens have the right to education. This right is ensured by an advanced educational system and by the educational measures enacted by the State for the benefit of the people.

Article 74. Citizens are free to engage in scientific, literary and artistic pursuits. The State grants benefits to inventors and innovators. Copyright, inventions and patents are protected by law.

Article 75. Citizens have freedom of residence and travel.

Article 76. Revolutionary fighters, the families of revolutionary and patriotic martyrs, the families of soldiers of the People's Army and disabled soldiers enjoy the special protection of the State and society.

Article 77. Women are accorded an equal social status and rights with men. The State affords special protection to mothers and children by providing maternity leave, reduced working hours for mothers with many children, a wide network of maternity hospitals, nurseries and kindergartens, and other measures. The State provides all conditions for a woman to play a full role in society.

Article 78. Marriage and the family are protected by the State. The State pays great attention to consolidating the family, the basic unit of social life.

Article 79. Citizens are guaranteed inviolability of the person and the home and privacy of correspondence. No citizens can be placed under control or be arrested nor can their homes be searched without a legal warrant.

Article 80. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea grants the right of asylum to foreign nationals persecuted for struggling for peace and democracy, national independence and socialism or for the freedom of scientific and cultural pursuits.

Article 81. Citizens must firmly safeguard the political and ideological unity and solidarity of the people. Citizens must cherish their organization and collective and work devotedly for the good of society and the people.

Article 82. Citizens must strictly observe the laws of the State and the socialist standards of life and defend their honor and dignity as citizens of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

Article 83. Work is the noble duty and honor of a citizen. Citizens must willingly and conscientiously participate in work and strictly observe labor discipline and the working hours.

Article 84. Citizens must take good care of the property of the State and social, cooperative organizations, combat all forms of misappropriation and waste and manage the nation's economy diligently as the masters. The property of the State and social, cooperative organizations is inviolable.

Article 85. Citizens must constantly increase their revolutionary vigilance and devotedly fight for the security of the State.

Article 86. National defense is the supreme duty and honor of citizens. Citizens must defend the country and serve in the army as required by law.

Chapter 6. State Organs[edit]

Section 1. The Supreme People's Assembly[edit]

Article 87. The Supreme People's Assembly is the highest organ of State power in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

Article 88. Legislative power is exercised by the Supreme People's Assembly. The Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly may also exercise legislative power when the Supreme People's Assembly is not in session.

Article 89. The Supreme People's Assembly is composed of deputies elected on the principle of universal, equal and direct suffrage by secret ballot.

Article 90. The Supreme People's Assembly is elected for a term of five years. A new Supreme People's Assembly is elected according to the decision of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly prior to the expiry of its term of office. When unavoidable circumstances render an election impossible, the term of office is prolonged until the election.

Article 91. The Supreme People's Assembly has the following powers.

  1. Amend or supplement the Constitution.
  2. Adopt, amend or supplement laws.
  3. Approve the major laws adopted by the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly, when the Supreme People's Assembly is not in session.
  4. Establish the basic principles of the State's domestic and foreign policies.
  5. Elect or recall the Chairman of the National Defense Commission of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.
  6. Elect or recall the President of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly.
  7. Elect or recall the First Vice Chairman, Vice Chairmen and members of the National Defense Commission on the recommendation of the Chairman of the National Defense Commission of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.
  8. Elect or recall the Vice Presidents, Honorary Vice Presidents, Secretary-General and members of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly.
  9. Elect or recall the Premier of the Cabinet.
  10. Appoint the Vice Premiers, Chairmen, Ministers and other members of the Cabinet on the recommendation of the Premier of the Cabinet.
  11. Appoint or remove the Prosecutor General of the Central Public Prosecutors Office.
  12. Elect or recall the President of the Central Court.
  13. Elect or recall the Chairmen, Vice Chairmen and members of the Committees of the Supreme People's Assembly.
  14. Deliberate and approve the reports on the State plan for the development of the national economy and on its implementation.
  15. Deliberate and approve the State budget and the report on its implementation.
  16. Hear a report on the work of the Cabinet and the central bodies, when necessary, and adopt measures.
  17. Decide on ratification and nullification of treaties suggested to the Supreme People's Assembly.

Article 92. The Supreme People's Assembly holds regular and extraordinary sessions. Regular sessions are convened once or twice a year by the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly. Extraordinary sessions are convened when the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly deems them necessary, or at the request of a minimum of one-third of the total number of deputies.

Article 93. The Supreme People's Assembly requires a quorum of at least two-thirds of the total number of deputies in order to meet.

Article 94. The Supreme People's Assembly elects its Chairman and Vice Chairmen. The Chairman presides over the sessions.

Article 95. Items to be considered at the Supreme People's Assembly are submitted by the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly, the Cabinet and the Committees of the Supreme People's Assembly. Items can also be presented by deputies.

Article 96. The first session of each Supreme People's Assembly elects a Credentials Committee and, on hearing the Committee's report, adopts a decision confirming the credentials of deputies.

Article 97. The Supreme People's Assembly issues laws, ordinances and decisions. Laws, ordinances and decisions of the Supreme People's Assembly are adopted when more than half of the deputies attending signify approval by a show of hands. The Constitution is amended or supplemented with the approval of more than two-thirds of the total number of deputies to the Supreme People's Assembly.

Article 98. The Supreme People's Assembly appoints the Bills Committee, the Budget Committee and other Committees. The Committees of the Supreme People's Assembly consist of Chairman, Vice Chairmen and members. The Committees of the Supreme People's Assembly assist in the work of the Supreme People's Assembly, and plan or deliberate the State policy and bills and take measures for their implementation. The Committees of the Supreme People's Assembly work under the guidance of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly during the intervals of sessions of the Supreme People's Assembly.

Article 99. Deputies to the Supreme People's Assembly are guaranteed inviolability. No deputy to the Supreme People's Assembly can be arrested or punished without the consent of the Supreme People's Assembly or, when it is not in session, without the consent of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly, unless they are caught in action.

Section 2. The National Defense Commission[edit]

Article 100. The National Defense Commission is the highest military leadership body of State power and the organ of overall administration of national defense.

Article 101. The National Defense Commission consists of the Chairman, the First Vice Chairman, Vice Chairmen and members.

The term of office of the National Defense Commission is the same as that of the Supreme People's Assembly.

Article 102. The Chairman of the National Defense Commission of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea commands and directs all the armed forces and guides national defense as a whole.

Article 103. The National Defense Commission has the following duties and powers.

  1. Direct the whole armed forces and national defense building.
  2. Establish or abolish central bodies in the field of national defense.
  3. Appoint or remove important military cadres.
  4. Enact military ranks and confer military ranks higher than a general.
  5. Proclaim a state of war and mobilization order in the country.

Article 104. The National Defense Commission issues decisions and orders.

Article 105. The National Defense Commission is accountable to the Supreme People's Assembly.

Section 3. The Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly[edit]

Article 106. The Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly is the highest organ of State power when the Supreme People's Assembly is not in session.

Article 107. The Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly consists of the President, Vice-Presidents, Secretary-General and members.

Article 108. The Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly may have a few Honorary Vice-Presidents. Honorary Vice-Presidents of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly may be the deputies to the Supreme People's Assembly who have participated in the work of State building for a long time and rendered distinguished service.

Article 109. The term of office of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly is the same as that of the Supreme People's Assembly. The Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly continues its work until the Presidium is newly elected, even after the term of the Supreme People's Assembly expires.

Article 110. The Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly has the following duties and powers.

  1. Convene sessions of the Supreme People's Assembly.
  2. Deliberate and adopt amendments and supplements to the new bills and regulations raised in the intervals between sessions of the Supreme People's Assembly and to the current laws and regulations and obtain the approval of the next session of the Supreme People's Assembly for major laws which are adopted and enforced.
  3. Deliberate and approve the State plan for the development of the people's economy, the State budget and the plan for their regulation raised for unavoidable reasons in the intervals between sessions of the Supreme People's Assembly.
  4. Interpret the Constitution as well as current laws and regulations.
  5. Supervise law observance by the State organs and take relevant measures.
  6. Rescind the decisions and directives of State bodies which run counter to the Constitution, the laws, ordinances and decisions of the Supreme People's Assembly, the decisions and orders of the National Defense Commission, the decrees, decisions and directives of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly, and suspend the implementation of the unwarranted decisions of local People's Assemblies.
  7. Conduct the election of deputies to the Supreme People's Assembly and organize the elections of deputies to the local People's Assemblies.
  8. Work with the deputies to the Supreme People's Assembly.
  9. Work with the Committees of the Supreme People's Assembly.
  10. Set up or abolish Commissions and Ministries of the Cabinet.
  11. Appoint or remove Vice Premiers, Chairmen, Ministers and other members of the Cabinet on the recommendation of the Premier of the Cabinet, when the Supreme People's Assembly is not in session.
  12. Appoint or remove members of Committees of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly.
  13. Elect or recall the Judges and People's Assessors of the Central Court.
  14. Approve or nullify treaties concluded with other countries.
  15. Decide and make public the appointment or recall of diplomatic representatives to other countries.
  16. Institute decorations, medals, titles of honor and diplomatic ranks and confer decorations, medals and titles of honor.
  17. Grant general amnesties and special pardon.
  18. Establish or alter administrative units and districts.

Article 111. The President of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly organizes and guides the work of the Presidium. The President of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly represents the State and receives the credentials and letters of recall of diplomatic representatives accredited by foreign states.

Article 112. The Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly convenes Plenary Meetings and Meetings of the Permanent Committee. The Plenary Meeting consists of all the members. The Meeting of the Permanent Committee consists of the President, Vice Presidents and Secretary-General.

Article 113. The plenary meeting of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly deliberates and decides on important matters arising in fulfilling the duties and powers of the Presidium. The meeting of the permanent committee deliberates and decides on matters entrusted to it by the Plenary Meeting.

Article 114. The Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly issues decrees, decisions and directives.

Article 115. The Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly establishes the Committees to assist it in its work.

Article 116. The Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly is accountable to the Supreme People's Assembly.

Section 4. The Cabinet[edit]

Article 117. The Cabinet is the administrative and executive body of the highest State power and organ of overall State administration.

Article 118. The Cabinet consists of the Premier, Vice-Premiers, Chairmen, Ministers and other members as required. The term of office of the Cabinet is the same as that of the Supreme People's Assembly.

Article 119. The Cabinet has the following duties and powers.

  1. Adopt measures for the implementation of the State policies.
  2. Adopt, amend or supplement the regulations on State administration on the basis of the Constitution and the laws.
  3. Direct the work of the Commissions and Ministries of the Cabinet, organs directly under the Cabinet and local People's Committees.
  4. Establish or abolish organs directly under the Cabinet, major administrative and economic bodies and enterprises, and adopt measures for improving State administration bodies.
  5. Draft the State plan for the development of the people's economy and adopt measures to put it into effect.
  6. Compile the State budget and adopt measures to implement it.
  7. Organize and execute the work of industries, agriculture, construction, transport, communications, commerce, trade, land administration, municipal administration, education, science, culture, health service, physical culture and sport, labor administration, protection of environment, sightseeing, and others.
  8. Adopt measures to strengthen the monetary and banking system.
  9. Inspect and control the establishment of order in State administration.
  10. Adopt measures to maintain public order, protect the property and interests of the State and social, cooperative organizations, and safeguard the rights of citizens.
  11. Conclude treaties with foreign countries and conduct external affairs.
  12. Rescind the decisions and directives of administrative and economic bodies which run counter to the decisions and directives of the Cabinet.

Article 120. The Premier of the Cabinet organizes and guides the work of the Cabinet. The Premier of the Cabinet represents the Government of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

Article 121. The Cabinet convenes plenary meetings and meetings of the permanent committee. The plenary meeting of the Cabinet consists of all the members of the Cabinet, and the meeting of the permanent committee consists of the Premier, Vice Premiers and other members of the Cabinet appointed by the Premier.

Article 122. The plenary meeting of the Cabinet deliberates and decides on the new and important administrative and economic matters. The meeting of the permanent committee deliberates and decides on the matters entrusted to it by the Plenary Meeting of the Cabinet.

Article 123. The Cabinet issues decisions and directives.

Article 124. The Cabinet may have non-permanent committees to assist it in its work.

Article 125. The Cabinet is accountable to the Supreme People's Assembly and to the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly when the Supreme People's Assembly is not in session.

Article 126. The newly-elected Premier of the Cabinet takes an oath of allegiance on behalf of the members of the Cabinet at the Supreme People's Assembly.

Article 127. The Commissions and Ministries of the Cabinet are departmental executive bodies of the Cabinet and central departmental bodies of administration.

Article 128. The Commissions and Ministries of the Cabinet supervise and guide the work of the sectors concerned in a uniform way under the guidance of the Cabinet.

Article 129. The Commissions and Ministries of the Cabinet run committee meetings and cadre meetings. The committee meeting and cadre meeting deliberate and decide on the measures for the implementation of the decisions and directives of the Cabinet and other important matters.

Article 130. The Commissions and Ministries of the Cabinet issue directives.

Section 5. The Local People's Assembly[edit]

Article 131. The People's Assembly of the province (or municipality directly under central authority), city (or district) and county is the local organ of State power.

Article 132. The local People's Assembly consists of deputies elected on the principle of universal, equal and direct suffrage by secret ballot.

Article 133. The term of office of the People's Assembly of the province (or municipality directly under central authority), city (or district) and county is four years.

A new local People's Assembly is elected according to the decision of the local People's Committee at the corresponding level prior to the expiry of its term of office. When unavoidable circumstances render an election impossible, the term of office is prolonged until the election.

Article 134. The local People's Assembly has the following duties and powers.

  1. Deliberate and approve the reports on the local plan for the development of the people's economy and on its implementation.
  2. Deliberate and approve the reports on the local budget and on its implementation.
  3. Adopt measures to observe State laws in the area concerned.
  4. Elect or recall the Chairman, Vice Chairmen, Secretary and members of the People's Committee at the corresponding level.
  5. Elect or recall the Judges and People's Assessors of the Court at the corresponding level.
  6. Rescind unwarranted decisions and directives of the People's Committee at the corresponding level and the People's Assemblies and People's Committees at lower levels.

Article 135. The local People's Assembly convenes regular and extraordinary sessions. Regular sessions are convened once or twice a year by the People's Committee at the corresponding level. Extraordinary sessions are convened when the People's Committee at the corresponding level deems them necessary or at the request of a minimum of one-third of the total number of deputies.

Article 136. The local People's Assembly requires a quorum of at least two-thirds of the total number of deputies in order to meet.

Article 137. The local People's Assembly elects its Chairman. The Chairman presides over the sessions.

Article 138. The local People's Assembly issues decisions.

Section 6. The Local People's Committee[edit]

Article 139. The People's Committee of the province (or municipality directly under central authority), city (or district) and county exercises the function of the local organ of State power when the People's Assembly at the corresponding level is not in session and the administrative and executive organ of State power at the corresponding level.

Article 140. The local People's Committee consists of the Chairman, Vice Chairmen, Secretary and members. The term of office of the local People's Committee is the same as that of the corresponding People's Assembly.

Article 141. The local People's Committee has the following duties and powers.

  1. Convene sessions of the People's Assembly.
  2. Organize the election of deputies to the People's Assembly.
  3. Work with the deputies to the People's Assembly.
  4. Implement the laws, ordinances, decrees, decisions and directives of the corresponding People's Assembly, the People's Assemblies and the People's Committees at higher levels, the Cabinet and the Commissions and Ministries of the Cabinet.
  5. Organize and carry out all administrative affairs in the given area.
  6. Draft the local plan for the development of the people's economy and adopt measures to implement it.
  7. Compile the local budget and adopt measures for its implementation.
  8. Adopt measures to maintain public order, protect the property and interests of the State and social, cooperative organizations and safeguard the rights of citizens in the given area.
  9. Inspect and control the establishment of order in State administration in the given area.
  10. Direct the work of the People's Committees at lower levels.
  11. Rescind unwarranted decisions and directives of the People's Committees at lower levels, and suspend the implementation of unwarranted decisions of the People's Assemblies at lower levels.

Article 142. The local People's Committee convenes plenary meetings and meetings of the permanent committee. The plenary meeting of the local People's Committee consists of all its members, and the meeting of the permanent committee consists of the Chairman, Vice Chairmen and Secretary.

Article 143. The plenary meeting of the local People's Committee deliberates and decides on important matters arising in implementing its duties and exercising its powers. The meeting of the permanent committee deliberates and decides on the matters entrusted to it by the Plenary Meeting.

Article 144. The local People's Committee issues decisions and directives.

Article 145. The local People's Committee may have non-permanent committees to assist it in its work.

Article 146. The local People's Committee is accountable to the corresponding People's Assembly. The local People's Committee is subordinate to the People's Committees at higher levels and the Cabinet.

Section 7. The Public Prosecutors Office and the Court[edit]

Article 147. Investigation and prosecution are conducted by the Central Public Prosecutors Office, the Public Prosecutors Offices of the province (or municipality directly under central authority), city (or district) and county and the Special Public Prosecutors Office.

Article 148. The term of office of the Prosecutor General of the Central Public Prosecutors Office is the same as that of the Supreme People's Assembly.

Article 149. Public prosecutors are appointed or removed by the Central Public Prosecutors Office.

Article 150. The functions of the Public Prosecutors Office are the following.

  1. Ensure the strict observance of State laws by institutions, enterprises, organizations and by citizens.
  2. Ensure that the decisions and directives of State bodies conform with the Constitution, the laws and ordinances, decisions of the Supreme People's Assembly, the decisions and orders of the National Defense Commission, the decrees, decisions and directives of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly, and with the decisions and directives of the Cabinet.
  3. Expose and institute legal proceedings against criminals and offenders in order to protect the State power of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the socialist system, the property of the State and social, cooperative organizations and personal rights as guaranteed by the Constitution and the people's lives and property.

Article 151. Investigation and prosecution are conducted under the unified direction of the Central Public Prosecutors Office, and all Public Prosecutors Offices are subordinate to their higher offices and the Central Public Prosecutors Office.

Article 152. The Central Public Prosecutors Office is accountable to the Supreme People's Assembly and to the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly when the Supreme People's Assembly is not in session.

Article 153. Justice is administered by the Central Court, the Court of the province (or municipality directly under central authority), the People's Court and the Special Court. Verdicts are delivered in the name of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

Article 154. The term of office of the Chief Justice of the Central Court is the same as that of the Supreme People's Assembly. The term of office of Judges and People's Assessors of the Central Court, the Court of the province (or municipality directly under central authority) and the People's Court is the same as that of the People's Assembly at the corresponding level.

Article 155. The Chairman and Judges of the Special Court are appointed or removed by the Central Court. The People's Assessors of the Special Court are elected by soldiers of the unit concerned or by employees at their meetings.

Article 156. The functions of the Court are the following.

  1. Protect through judicial procedure the State power and the socialist system established in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the property of the State and social, cooperative organizations, personal rights as guaranteed by the Constitution, and the lives and property of citizens.
  2. Ensure that all institutions, enterprises, organizations and citizens abide strictly by State laws and staunchly combat class enemies and all law-breakers.
  3. Give judgments and findings with regard to property and conduct notarial work.

Article 157. Justice is administered by a Court consisting of one Judge and two People's Assessors. In special cases, there may be three Judges.

Article 158. Court cases are heard in public and the accused is guaranteed the right of defense. Hearings may be closed to the public as stipulated by law.

Article 159. Judicial proceedings are conducted in the Korean language. Foreign citizens may use their own language during court proceedings.

Article 160. In administering justice, the Court is independent, and judicial proceedings are carried out in strict accordance with the law.

Article 161. The Central Court is the highest judicial organ of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. The Central Court supervises the judicial activities of all the Courts.

Article 162. The Central Court is accountable to the Supreme People's Assembly and to the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly when the Supreme People's Assembly is not in session.

Chapter 7 - National Emblem, National Flag, National Anthem and Capital[edit]

Article 163. The national emblem of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea bears the design of a grand hydroelectric power station under Mt. Paektu, the sacred mountain of the revolution, and the beaming light of a five-pointed red star, with ears of rice forming an oval frame, bound with a red ribbon bearing the inscription “The Democratic People's Republic of Korea”.

Article 164. The national flag of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea consists of a central red panel, bordered both above and below by a narrow white stripe and a broad blue stripe, and the central red panel bears a five-pointed red star within a white circle near the hoist. The ratio of the width to its length is 1:2.

Article 165. The national anthem of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea is “The Patriotic Song”.

Article 166. The capital of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea is Pyongyang.


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