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North Korea's Kim thanks people in rare New Year's cards

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Posted at 10:33 PM, Dec 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-31 22:33:51-05

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has thanked his people for their trust and support in difficult times and wished them good health in New Year’s Day cards.

Kim is expected to skip his usual televised speech and address a ruling party congress this month. State media quoted Kim as saying, “I will work hard to bring earlier the new era in which the ideals and desires of our people will come true."

North Korea is one of the world’s most cloistered countries, and it’s virtually impossible to independently confirm whether all its 25 million people received Kim’s cards, the first sent by a leader since 1995.

Kim faces the toughest challenges of his nine-year rule due to the pandemic, natural disasters and sanctions.