‘Missing’ Kim Jong-Un absent on key party anniversary

‘Missing’ Kim Jong-Un absent on key party anniversary

‘Missing’ Kim Jong-Un absent on key party anniversary

Written by Bella Dalima

10 Oct, 2014 | 3:39 pm

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un apparently missed a key political event on Friday, extending a month-long absence that has fueled rampant speculation about his physical and political health, although South Korea believes he remains in full control.

Kim was not listed by the state KCNA news agency as being among the officials who made an annual pilgrimage to the mausoleum in Pyongyang housing the remains of his father and grandfather.

However, a floral tribute bearing Kim’s name was presented to the two statues of Kim Jong-Il and Kim Il-Sung to mark the 69th anniversary of the North Korean ruling party’s foundation, the agency said.

Kim, believed to be 30 or 31, has not been seen since September 3 when he attended a music concert with his wife in Pyongyang.

Competing theories for his disappearance range widely from an extended rest period to a leadership coup, via a long list of possible illnesses and ailments including broken ankles, gout and diabetes.

South Korea, which has largely distanced itself from the guessing game, said it saw no indication to suggest Kim was no longer in charge.

“There are continuous reports (in North Korea’s state media) concerning the exercise of Kim Jong-Un’s leadership,” Seoul’s Unification Ministry spokesman Lim Byeong-Chul told reporters.

Kim, a heavy smoker, has shown striking weight gain since coming to power following the death of his father in 2011, and recent TV footage had shown him walking with a pronounced limp.



Source: HindustanTimes

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