North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un re-emerged in the public eye after going missing for weeks, prompting wild speculation concerning his health. There was no acknowledgement of the North Korean leader’s bizarre 20-day absence during his first public appearance. State television network KCNA reported that the North Korean dictator attended the completion of a fertiliser plant in a region north of Pyongyang.
This comes amid fears among North Korean experts that Kim will now usher in a gruesome spate of killings as a way of purging Pyongyang’s old-guard.
Morrow explained: “What has probably gone on here that the rumours of his demise was greatly exaggerated.
“He decided to do this, lay low, and see how things broke power-wise, and see who tried to take power in the event of his actual demise.
“I suspect we will see some purges in North Korea pretty soon.”
Photos of Kim released yesterday appeared to show a mysterious needle mark on his forearm – prompting speculation of heart surgery.
But a senior South Korean government official told reporters today that the presidential office does not believe the authoritarian leader underwent an operation.
The news from South Korea came as the two sides exchanged gunfire along the contested border, just a day after Kim’s reappearance.
Choi Kang, vice president of the Asan Institute for Policy Studies, said he believed the timing of the provocation means it was planned to show that Kim was still in charge of the military.