North Korea’s official news KCNA has reported that Kim Jong-un had inspected on June 1 and June 2. Sources inside North Korea indicate that Kim Jong-un’s visit actually took place from May 29 to May 31.
Kim inspected KangKye Fine Machinery Works factory under the auspices of the Second Economy Committee (Military sector), 4th Machinery Industry Bureau. This manufacturing facility, the largest underground military equipment factory in North Korea, has over 10,000 workers. They produce SAM-7 surface-to-air missiles and air-to-surface missiles. JangJa River Machine Tools factory is known to manufacture guidance equipment for missiles and other weaponry.
Kim also inspected 2.8 Machinery Works located in JonChon-gun, JaGangDo, which produces automatic rifles, machine guns, 14.5MM AA machine guns, and mortar. PyongNam Machinery Works, located in GakAm Workers District (NoDongJa-ku) of GaeChon City, PyongAnNamDo, produces short ranges rockets and tank engines, also known as “January 18 Factory.”
Among those accompanied Kim on these inspection visits was Hyon Song-wol, director of MoRanBong Band and member of the Political Bureau of the Workers Party of Korea (WPK), also rumored to be Kim’s lover.
Jo Yong-won from the Guidance Department, Kim Chang-son of State Affairs Committee, and Yu Jin from KWP Military Industry Vice Minister also accompanied Kim.
The sources speculated, “Kim’s visit to JaGangDo this time was not intended for inspecting military equipment manufacturing facilities, but to examine the escape route for Kim in an emergency situation.” There is a secret tunnel starting from the canyon in HeungJu-dong in KangKye to Manpo City by the Yalu. A railroad bridge over the Yalu connects Manpo to J’ian in Jilin, China. The construction of the secret tunnel from KangKye to Manpo was started in the late 1970s and finished mid-1990s. The sources also thought that there was a secret tunnel from Kim’s palace in ChongWoon-dong, Pyongyang to KangKye.