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1948 North Korean parliamentary election

Parliamentary elections were held for the first Supreme People's Assembly in the Soviet-occupied North Korea on 25 August 1948.[1] A total of 572 deputies were elected, of which 360 were reserved for representatives of South Korea. The North Korean government claimed that 77.8% of South Korean voters had taken part in underground elections to elect 1,000 delegates who would elect the 360 South Korean members of the SPA.[2] Voters were presented with a single list from the Democratic Front for the Reunification of the Fatherland, which was dominated by the Workers' Party of Korea.

1948 North Korean parliamentary election

25 August 1948 1957 →

All 572 seats to the Supreme People's Assembly
  First party
  Kim Il Sung Portrait-2.jpg
Leader Kim Il-sung
Party Workers' Party
Alliance Fatherland Front
Seats won
157 / 572

Elected Premier

Kim Il-sung
Fatherland Front

Only one candidate was presented in each constituency, all of which were selected by the WPK, although some ran under the banner of other parties or state organisations to verify the North Korean constitution, allowing worker democracy.[3] Voter turnout was reported to be 99.97%, with 98.49% voting in favour of the candidates presented.[4]

This election set the tone for all elections held in North Korea. The 98.49% total is the lowest vote share claimed by the Democratic Front in any election. In subsequent elections, the Democratic Front has claimed unanimous or near-unanimous support.

Its first session was held between 2 and 10 September, with two main declarations: "Statement on the Transfer of Power" and "The Political Program of the Government of the DPRK".

The Constitutional Assembly United Nations-sponsored election in U.S.-occupied South Korea had taken place three months earlier.


Alliance Party Votes % Seats
Democratic Front
for the Reunification
of the Fatherland
Workers' Party of Korea 98.49 157
Chondoist Chongu Party 35
Korean Democratic Party 35
Dongro People's Party 20
People's Republic Party 20
Democratic Independent Party 20
Others 171
Independents 114
Against 1.51
Total 100 572
Registered voters/turnout 99.97
Source: Nohlen et al., East Gate Book[4]


  1. ^ Par Carter Malkasian (2001) The Korean War, 1950-1953 Fitzroy Dearborn Publishers, p13 ISBN 1-57958-364-4
  2. ^ Dieter Nohlen, Florian Grotz & Christof Hartmann (2001) Elections in Asia and the Pacific: A Data Handbook: South East Asia, East Asia, and the Pacific Volume 2, p398 ISBN 0-19-924959-8
  3. ^ Nohlen et al., p404
  4. ^ a b East Gate Book (2003) North Korea Handbook: Yonhap News Agency Seoul, p124 ISBN 0765610043

Further readingEdit

  • Kim Il-sung (1980) [1948]. "Against the Elections of a Reactionary Separate Government in South Korea and for the Achievement of Korea's Reunification and Independence: Speech Made at the 25th Meeting of the Central Committee of the Democratic National United Front of North Korea, March 9, 1948". Kim Il Sung: Works. Pyongyang: Foreign Languages Publishing House. OCLC 827642144.