The Workers' Party of Korea
) is the founding and sole ruling party of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, commonly known as North Korea. Founded in 1949 from the merger of the Workers' Party of North Korea and the Workers' Party of South Korea, the WPK is the oldest active party in Korea. It also controls the Korean People's Army, North Korea's armed forces. The WPK is the largest party represented in the Supreme People's Assembly and coexists with two other legal parties making up the Democratic Front for the Reunification of Korea. However, these minor parties are completely subservient to the WPK and must accept the WPK's "leading role" as a condition of their existence. The WPK is banned in South Korea under the National Security Act and is sanctioned by the United Nations, the European Union, Australia, and the United States.