First Wednesday: The looming power shift in North Korea and the nuclear threat beyond

Talk October 6, 2010 7:00 PM

Little is known about Kim Jong-il’s youngest son Kim Jong Un but his promotion to North Korea’s powerful defence commission is being interpreted as a clear sign that he is being groomed to be his father’s heir.

If Kim Jong-il is paving the way for a handover of power to a third generation of his faimily, what does this mean for the future of the communist dynasty and its economic and foreign polices?

With so much of what goes on inside North Korea veiled in secrecy we will be discussing what recent developments mean for North Korea and its relationships with its neighbours and the world beyond.

With North Korea’s nuclear threat said to have reached an “alarming level” we will turn to the issue of nuclear proliferation and assess the dangers posed not only by North Korea, but also Libya Iran and the South Asia region. An opportunity to ask questions and discuss with experts.


Aidan Foster-Carter, Honorary Senior Research Fellow in Sociology & Modern Korea at Leeds University;

Charles Scanlon, BBC correspondent in Japan and South Korea from 2000 to 2007, currently an editor at BBC World Service news;

Tim Tate, investigative journalist and film maker, director of Dirty Little Secrets;

Mark Fitzpatrick, director of Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Programme at International Institute for Strategic Studies;

More to be confirmed shortly.

Hosted by Paddy O’Connell of BBC Radio 4’s Broadcasting House, October’s First Wednesday discussion will be another opportunity to join in a lively public meeting which brings together experts and commentators and mix their views with contributions from our audience.