AGENCIES | There are new questions surrounding the health of North Korean leader, Kim Jong Un’s health after his reported absence from “Army Day” celebrations on Saturday.
This is the second major holiday the Supreme Leader has missed in recent weeks, Vox staff writer covering International Security and Defense Issues, Alex Ward joins CBS NEws with the latest on the rumours surrounding Kim Jong Un’s health.
The Guardian revealed that A special train possibly belonging to the North Korean ruler, Kim Jong-un was spotted at a resort town, according to satellite images reviewed by a Washington-based North Korea monitoring project, amid conflicting reports about Kim’s health and whereabouts.
The monitoring project, 38 North, said in its report on Saturday that the train was parked at the “leadership station” in Wonsan on April 21 – 23 April. The station is reserved for the use of the Kim family, it said.
Speculation about Kim’s health first arose due to his absence from the anniversary of the birthday of North Korea’s founding father and Kim’s grandfather, Kim Il-sung, on 15 April.
On Saturday, Kim missed another national holiday, North Korea’s Military Foundation Day, further fuelling speculation about his health.
According to a report in Newsweek, US intelligence has seen no sign of unusual military activity in the reclusive regime but are continuing to monitor the situation closely.
Newsweek quoted a senior unnamed Pentagon official as saying: “We have observed no indications or received any additional information to make a conclusive assessment on the status of North Korean leadership or the health of Kim Jong-un.”
But the official went on to say the presence of the train in Wonsan and Kim’s absence from recent events leant credibility to reports of his ill-health. Kim’s status meant North Korea could conceivably delay announcing his death to ensure security measures were in place, the official said.
The British News Daily, The Guardian revealed that North Korea’s state media last reported on Kim’s whereabouts when he presided over a meeting on April 11