Thousands of ecstatic North Koreans joined a mass dance and a torchlight parade at the end of the first Workers' Party Congress for 36 years, at which Kim Jong-un formalised the country's claim to be a nuclear power. Thousands of people shouted "manse!", or "live forever!" while clasping their hands in the air or waving pink flowers as they passed before Kim and other top officials on a leaders' platform.

The state also put on a concert by Moranbong, an all-female band whose members were selected by the North Korean leader.

North Korea congress concert
People participate in a mass dance on Kim Il-Sung square after the ruling Workers' Party of Korea party wrapped up its first congress in 36 yearsDamir Sagolj/Reuters
North Korea congress concert
Performers take part in a mass dance on Kim Il-Sung SquareEd Jones/AFP
North Korea congress concert
North Koreans take part in a mass dance on Kim Il-Sung square in PyongyangEd Jones/AFP
North Korea congress concert
People participate in a mass dance in the capital's main ceremonial square, a day after the ruling Workers' Party of Korea party wrapped up its first congress in 36 yearsDamir Sagolj/Reuters
North Korea congress concert
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un waves from a balcony Kim Il Sung Square before the start of a mass rally to celebrate the successful Seventh Congress of the Workers' Party of KoreaKCNA/Reuters
North Korea congress concert
Cameramen take position atop one of buildings in the capital's main ceremonial square during a mass rally and paradeDamir Sagolj/Reuters
North Korea congress concert
Dancers perform on Kim Il-Sung square during festivities marking the end of the 7th Workers Party CongressEd Jones/AFP
North Korea congress concert
Fireworks illuminate the night sky over Kim Il-Sung SquareEd Jones/AFP
North Korea congress concert
Performers take part in a torchlight parade on Kim Il-Sung SquareEd Jones/AFP
North Korea congress concert
Fireworks explode over participants carrying torches on Kim Il-Sung SquareDamir Sagolj/Reuters
North Korea congress concert
A fireworks display comes to an end after festivities marking the conclusion of the 7th Workers Party Congress in Kim Il-Sung SquareEd Jones/AFP
North Korea congress concert
A man looks at the camera as spectators watch a torchlight parade on Kim Il-Sung SquareEd Jones/AFP
North Korea congress concert
A government guide watches as attendees of the 7th Workers' Party Congress arrive for a cultural performance in PyongyangEd Jones/AFP
North Korea congress concert
North Koreans arrive for a cultural performance in PyongyangEd Jones/AFP
North Korea congress concert
The Moranbong Band, an all-female North Korean pop band formed by leader Kim Jong Un, performs at a celebratory concert marking the end of the 7th Workers' Party Congress in PyongyangDamir Sagolj/Reuters
North Korea congress concert
North Korea's all-female Moranbong Band perform in PyongyangEd Jones/AFP
North Korea congress concert
Members of the Korean People's Army military chorus sing during a celebratory concert marking the end of the 7th Workers' Party CongressDamir Sagolj/Reuters
North Korea congress concert
Military officers salute as the national anthem is played at a celebratory concertDamir Sagolj/Reuters
North Korea congress concert
A picture of the North Korean leader Kim

Kim used the party congress, the first since 1980, to highlight North Korea's aim to expand its nuclear arsenal, in defiance of UN sanctions, though he said the weapons would only be used if North Korea was threatened with similar weapons. Kim, who assumed power in 2011 after his father's death, took on the new title of party chairman. The promotion – his previous party title was first secretary – had been predicted by analysts who had expected Kim would use the congress to further shore up his power.

An unusually large contingent of 128 foreign journalists were issued visas to visit during the congress, but access to formal proceedings was limited to a brief visit by a small group to the congress venue. BBC correspondent Rupert Wingfield-Hayes and two of his colleagues, who had been in North Korea to cover the visit of a group of Nobel laureates ahead of the congress, were expelled from the country.