North Korea is facing a "historic turning point," the country's main newspaper said Monday, in an apparent reference to next week's summit between leader Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump.
The Rodong Sinmun made the comment as it called for greater economic development efforts.
"Our country is facing a historic turning point," the Rodong Sinmun, the organ of the North's ruling party, said in a commentary. "It is time for us to tighten our shoe strings and run fast, looking for a higher target as we are facing a decisive moment."
Kim and Trump are set to hold their second summit in Vietnam's Hanoi on Feb. 27-28. The talks are expected to focus on trading denuclearization measures from the North for corresponding economic and other concessions from the US.
Calling for economic development efforts, the North's paper emphasized that lessons should be learned from a success story from an island, called "edo" off the country's west coast where "stunning achievements" have been made.
The "miraculous" successes, such as constructing ships equipped with state-of-the-art technology, a seashell farm built on a tidal flat and a floating dock under development, were attributed to the self-reliance spirit shared by government officials and citizens there.
"There are many areas around us that have better conditions than edo has," the paper said. "Why is edo making such stunning achievements, but some other areas stagnating unable to jump out of the swamp of defeatism.
"This is all about patriotism, conviction and will," it added.
"With the nation-first sprit in mind, let's try to demonstrate our nation's dignity and stature to the world with every single creature."
The emphasis on a nation-first attitude and economic development comes as North Korea is preparing for a summit with the US.
The second summit is likely to focus on concrete denuclearization measures to be taken by North Korea and "corresponding" steps by the US that could include the sanctions relief that Pyongyang has demanded as it pushes for economic development of its impoverished country. (Yonhap)