President Donald Trump responded to reports about North Korean despot Kim Jong Un, reposting state media photos that purport to show Kim attending a ceremony at a fertilizer factory.
“I, for one, am glad to see he is back, and well!” Trump wrote on Twitter.
Kims attendance at the ribbon-cutting ceremony was the first public appearance hes made in about three weeks, and it comes amid speculation about his health. Several news outlets in Asia had reported that Kim, 36, was brain dead or had died, although South Korean officials said he was alive and still in control of the regime.
I, for one, am glad to see he is back, and well! https://t.co/mIWVeRMnOJ
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 2, 2020
An adviser to South Korean President Moon Jae-in told news outlets that Kim had been staying in the Wonsan area since mid-April and noted that “no suspicious movements have so far been detected.”
Questions arose about Kims health after he missed the celebration of his grandfather, the regimes founder, Kim Il Sung—an event that hes attended every year since he took power in 2011.
At the same time, during the speculation about his death, North Korean state media didnt respond. The impoverished communist country still hasnt publicly responded to reports about his health, which is considered a matter of state security.
North Korea tightly controls all information about its leader, the subject of an extensive personality cult. Meanwhile, a power vacuum at the top could lead to a civil war-like scenario, as Kim has not named a potential successor, according to experts, although some have said that his sister, Kim Yo Jong, could be tapped to become the next leader.
Last week, several South Korean officials _