Kim Jong Un
Kim Jong-Un hails the country's nuclear weapon tests at the country's first ruling party congress for 36 yearsJung Yeon-Je/Getty

Kim Jong-Un hailed the "unprecedented" achievements of a hydrogen bomb test and launch of an Earth observation satellite at the North Korea's Worker's Party congress on Friday. He lauded the achievements as ways to defend the country's "dignity" and "self-reliance" and would help lead the nation of 24 million people to its "final victory".

In his opening address of the first congress of the ruling party since 1980, Kim hailed the "magnificent… and thrilling" nuclear test carried out on 6 January, which Pyongyang claimed was a powerful hydrogen bomb.

Kim goes on to describe the test and launch of long-range rocket "smashed the hostile forces' vicious manoeuvres geared to sanctions and strangulation, and displayed to the world the indomitable spirit, daring grit and inexhaustible strength of heroic Korea".

"The allied imperialist forces concentrated their anti-socialist offensive on our Republic, our Party and people were compelled to fight against them single-handed," Kim stated later in his address applause and cheers from 3,467 delegates and 1,387, observers, who appeared to be weeping, according to the LA Times.

Since 2011, North Korea has conducted four nuclear tests, two of which had been conducted when Kim came to power following the death of his father and former leader Kim Jong-Il.

The congress is the highest-level gathering in North Korea's political system, and is attended by delegates from across the country to highlight national unity and stability under Kim Jung-Un. The convening of the congress after the long interval has raised expectations that the young leader may announce major policy changes or new personnel in the upcoming days, though it is not known how many days the congress should last.

The congress was broadcast on North Korean state television, showing images of military overture and clips from old North Korean films, but was not broadcast live, according to Sky News. More than 100 journalists were granted visas to cover the event but were taken on a tour of a wire making factory instead of attending the congress. Others were kept outside of the congress venue, and were only allowed to report from hundreds of metres away.

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