US officials said that they are trying to find details about the health of Kim Jong Un after they have received information that the North Korean leader was in critical condition due to undergoing cardiovascular surgery, which happened last week.
One of the officials in the White House said that Kim Jong Un took surgery and it took a turn for the worse.
Citing a US official who had direct knowledge of this matter, CNN had reported earlier that Kim may be in “grave danger” after the surgery. The White House has declined to comment.
A representative at South Korea’s presidential office, Kang Min-Seok, said that there was nothing to affirm on speculation over Kim’s health and nothing strange has been identified in North Korea so far.
A website that is Seoul-based, the Daily NK, that gathers information from informants that are within the isolated nation, reported separately that Kim underwent a “cardiovascular surgical procedure” and has recovered mostly. The verification of the report immediately was not possible, which the Daily NK said was based on one person inside North Korea.
North Korea is one confidential country and the health of North Korea’s leader is one of the state’s most strictly secured secrets, which is only known by few people only that too in the inner circle of leadership. Kim’s unprecedented absence from 15 April celebrations for the birthday of his grandfather and state founder Kim Il Sung, one of the biggest days on the North Korean calendar, has raised speculations on him.
The unification ministry of South Korea on Friday said that to speculate about the reason for Kim’s absence was “inappropriate”. As mentioned in state media, Kim had made 17 appearances in public- at a pace of a little more than once a week. That’s slightly down from 84 public appearances which were made last year.
A battle has been going on against the coronavirus outbreak by North Korea. The lockdown thus imposed led to non-happening of some celebrations and some other major events and for cadres to appear in protective masks in public events with Kim.
Kim has got little time to groom his successor, but during his time as a leader, Kim elevated the status of his younger sister Kim Yo Jong. She came into global highlight when she was sent as representative to the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, and she also became the first member of the immediate ruling family to visit Seoul.