Hazmat suits in toned-down Pyongyang parade

North Korea celebrated the 73rd anniversary of its foundation with a night-time military parade.

Leader Kim Jong Un watched as paramilitary and public security forces of the Worker-Peasant Red Guards, the country’s largest civilian defense force, marched for the first time in years in Pyongyang’s Kim Il Sung Square. They marched through at midnight.

It was the first time since 2013 there has been a parade with the 5.7-million-strong Worker-Peasant Red Guards, launched as reserve forces after the exit of Chinese forces who fought for the North in the 1950-53 Korean War.

The parade included masked personnel in orange hazmat suits, an apparent nod to anti-coronavirus efforts, though no cases have been reported. Conventional weapons also rolled though, including multiple rocket launchers and anti-tank missiles.

But no ballistic missiles were seen or mentioned, and Kim did not deliver a speech – unlike last October when he showcased previously unseen intercontinental ballistic missiles during a pre-dawn military parade.

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