SEOUL, Aug. 5 (Yonhap) -- Kim Myong-sik, a senior North Korean military official, may have re-taken the post of the commander of the country's navy, a source familiar with North Korean affairs said Friday.

Kim, a vice chief of the General Staff of the North's military, may have replaced Ri Yong-ju, given that he was recently found to have taken the seat of the navy's commander at major military events, according to the source.

He served as the navy commander until Ri assumed the post in April 2015.

Kim sat next to Choi Yong-ho, the commander of the North Korean Air Force, at a military event on July 27 to mark the 63rd anniversary of an armistice effectively ending the 1950-53 Korean War, according to a photo carried by the North’s main newspaper Rodong Sinmun.

Another photo showed Kim, clad in a military uniform, sitting fourth from North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's left at a military gathering for exemplary commanding officers and servicemen held earlier this week.

Three key military officials -- Hwang Pyong-so, director of the general political bureau of the Korean People's Army (KPA); Ri Myong-su, chief of the general staff of the KPA; and Pak Yong-sik, minister of the armed forces -- were seated between the leader and navy commander.

Last year, Kim was demoted to his current position with his military rank being lowered to a lieutenant general from a colonel general amid rumors that he was purged.

The source said that his military rank would have been restored if he re-assumed the post of navy commander.

Since taking power in late 2011, the North's leader Kim has often reshuffled the military's leadership and adjust ranks in a bid to tame the military.