North Korea appointed Choe Sun-hui as the first female foreign affairs minister of the nation in a ruling party meeting, chaired by the Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un. According to the state news agency, the gathering was held for two days from June 8 to June 10.
With a decade long experience in the ministry, Choe, has also overseen North Korea's negotiations and nuclear talks with the United States.
Daughter of former North Korean prime minister Choe Yong Rim, the veteran diplomat has now replaced Ri Son Gwon, a former hardline military officer, who will be the new spokesperson on rival South Korea.
The news of Choe's appointment comes amid speculation that North Korea will soon carry out its seventh nuclear test in defiance of United Nations sanctions, CNN reported.
In 2022 alone, the country has managed to conduct almost 17 missile launches which include two successful ICBM tests. A week ago, Pyongyang test fired a few short-range ballistic missiles from multiple locations.
In retaliation the US and South Korea flew 20 fighter jets over the Korean Peninsula on Tuesday. This 'show of force' was done to simple demonstrate that (South Korea and the US have) "the ability and readiness" to immediately respond at any given situation.
According the South China Morning Post, the International Atomic Energy Agency has warned that Pyongyang might be "readying its nuclear test site." Referring to the rise in activity detected at the Punggye-ri site, the agency further mentioned that the country's nuclear program is a 'matter of grave concern.'
Biden administration has tried to contact North Korea in last month but did not receive a response. The Korean Central News Agency's report of the gathering in Pyongyang, mentioned that there was no addressal of any plans regarding the nuclear launch nor was there a direct discussion on the retaliatory move of the US and South Korea.