Kim Jong-Un had been staying in a seaside resort in Wonsan, in eastern North Korea, for two weeks.
Rabat – The top foreign policy adviser to South Korean President Moon Jae-in declared North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un is “alive and well” on April 26, following the rumors of his death and grave sickness.
“He has been staying in the Wonsan area since April 13. No suspicious movements have so far been detected,” said adviser Moon Chung-in to CNN.
With Moon Chung-In’s statements, South Korea contradicts previous reports from international media outlets that the supreme leader may no longer be in power in Pyongyang.
Speculations started swirling about the 36-year-old’s well-being following his absence at his grandfather’s birthday celebration on April 15, which is the country’s most important holiday. Kim’s last public appearance took place on April 11.
Several reports suggested the North Korean leader may no longer be in power and was in grave danger after heart surgery.
An online newspaper based in South Korea that focuses on North Korea, Daily NK, reported on April 21 that Kim underwent heart surgery and continues to recuperate from the procedure at a villa outside of Pyongyang.
Daily NK's report on Kim Jong Un's cardiovascular procedure states that he is in stable condition. The report makes no mention of the leader being in critical condition or being on the verge of death. https://t.co/ZhNQKNeHwt #DPRK #NorthKorea
— The Daily NK (@The_Daily_NK) April 22, 2020
American National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien said the US is “keeping a close eye” on reports about Kim’s health, according to CNN.
Another US official told CNN on April 20 “the concerns about Kim’s health are credible but the severity is hard to assess.”
It is not the first time Kim has gone missing from public view for an extended time. In 2014 the leader disappeared apparently for health reasons. Kim Jong-Un had health issues related to heavy smoking, hereditary illness, and obesity.
North Korea has long been surrounded by mystery, and every piece of information related to the ruling family is the subject of theory and speculation in the absence of a free press.
Analysts rely on North Korean state media, which promotes propaganda videos, for information. Refugees from the state report a different reality than state media.