As reports of Kim Jong Un’s poor health swirl, foreign intelligence services and North Korea watchers are closely monitoring the secretive dictatorship for signs that something is amiss. Kim is reported to have undergone cardiovascular surgery this week, which would explain his absence from a key ceremony last week celebrating the “Day of the Sun”—a celebration of Kim’s grandfather and North Korea’s founder Kim Il Sung. Reports of his condition vary. CNN cited an unnamed intelligence official who said Kim was in grave danger following the surgery, while NBC News reporter Katy Tur tweeted that the dictator was in a coma, though later deleted the post “out of an abundance of caution.” But South Korea’s Yonhap News Agency cited an unidentified government official who said there were no unusual signs coming from North Korea to suggest that Kim was in a serious condition. Reuters , meanwhile, cited an anonymous source within China’s International Liaison Department—the body responsible for dealing with North Korea—as saying Kim is not believed to be critically ill. If Kim’s condition is as serious as some have reported—which is far from confirmed—thoughts both inside and outside North Korea will soon turn to the question of succession. North… Read full this story
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