No long-range missiles, N.Korea military parade features floats and flowers

Korean People's Army soldiers salute as they ride tanks during the military parade

Pyongyang residents have been training for months for the anniversary and held up the bouquets to spell out words and slogans that can be seen from the VIP viewing area.

During the parade, people waved balloons, flowers and flags as goose-stepping soldiers, tanks and floats passed by.

This gallery was curated by Associated Press photo editor Wally Santana in Bangkok.

The North also refrained from immediately televising the event, though North Korean media were out in force to film it, deploying booms and - for possibly the first time - drones with cameras. "Much better than before I took office".

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, right, and Li Zhanshu, the third-highest ranking official in the ruling Communist Party of China.

Soldiers march during a parade to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the founding of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) in Pyongyang, DPRK, on September 9, 2018.

A concert on Saturday night attended by the titular head of state, Kim Yong-nam, and foreign delegations featured little in the way of martial messaging or images, with only a few shadowy American bombers shown briefly in footage of the 1950-1953 Korean War.

This year's celebrations also marked the revival of North Korea's iconic mass games after a five-year hiatus.

Almost 300 days have now passed since Kim launched a missile - and there fears that could all come crashing down with a test today to marking the founding of North Korea by Kim's granddad Kim Il-Sung.

At the parade staged on the 70th anniversary of the country's founding, North Korea also emphasised its friendship with China, with many political analysts saying Kim is willing to ensure support from Beijing to promote negotiations with Washington.

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He revealed the new missile is expected to be dubbed the Unha-4.

In his New Year's message in January, Kim had pledged to celebrate the country's 70th anniversary with "utmost grandness" after declaring the completion of nuclear capability and vowing to shift its focus to economic development.

Grace Liu, a research associate at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies in Monterey, Calif., said the low-key parade appeared to be aimed at maintaining a "relatively civil dialogue" with Seoul and Washington, especially given Moon's impending visit next week.

The military parade was North Korea's first since February 8 this year, when the country celebrated the 70th anniversary of the founding of the Korean People's Army. But the only ones on show were the blue Kumsong-3, an anti-ship cruise missile, and the Pongae-5 surface-to-air weapon.

At the February parade, Pyongyang displayed what appeared to be intercontinental ballistic missiles like the Hwasong-15 missile, capable of delivering a nuclear weapon to any city on the United States mainland, in a thinly veiled threat to Washington.

Pyongyang residents unable to attend at the square on Sunday lined the streets around town to cheer and applaud convoys carrying the troops after they completed the parade duties. He claims to have perfected his nuclear arsenal enough to deter US aggression and devote his resources to raising the nation's standard of living.

Kim recently said he'd like to achieve denuclearization while Trump is president.

"I believe we sang (about the) people's hope which is wielding a strong power of scientific technology and nuclear state once again so that we can be the world's most powerful country".

The reduced display compared to past years earned a thank you note from U.S. President Donald Trump, who hailed it as a "big and very positive statement from North Korea".

Tickets to this year's spectacle started at just over US$100 and went up to more than US$800 per seat.

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