Previously, a Japanese media indicated that the dictator would be in a vegetative state. Various national media report rumors of the alleged death of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un after his health was complicated by surgery. According to the New York Post, the deputy director of the Hong Kong television network HKSTV claimed that the dictator had died , citing a “solid” source.
Hours earlier, the Japanese outlet Shukan Gendai reported that a Chinese doctor, part of the team treating Kim, reported that the president is in a vegetative state. Reuters had already reported that there were medical teams from China treating Kim. At the moment, no North Korean media has mentioned anything about the health or alleged death of his president, nor about his whereabouts, despite reports from other media.
If rumors of his critical condition or even his death were confirmed, North Korean ruler Kim Jong-Un would likely be relieved by his sister Kim Yo-Jong. But who is she?
Who is Kim Yo-jong?
Described as unrelenting, she is credited with painstakingly building Kim Jong-Un’s international image.
In 2014, she began her political career with the appointment of Deputy Director of the Propaganda and Agitation Department of the Workers’ Party. Such designation led to the accusation of the United States for “abuse of human rights” and censorship to hide “inhumane and oppressive conduct.”
Although most of her life has been kept very low-key, it was at the 2018 Winter Olympics that he positioned herself in the media.
Later, her presence was strengthened when she confronted the tense neighbor of South Korea, calling her “a scared dog that barks”, in allusion to the continuous disagreements expressed about a border military exercise.
Kim Yo-Jong gained the trust of the Workers’ Party, which is considered the national political elite and has control of the Asian nation.
Only the controversial Kim Jong-Un trusts her, according to intelligence reports, because for a long period of time she has been her spokesperson and companion to important events such as the two summits with US President Donald Trump.
The young woman is the youngest of the de facto leader’s brothers. She is the only child of Kim Jong-il and her consort, the dancer Ko Yong-hui.
On September 26, 1989, she was born in Pyongyang, according to the United States Treasury Department, although the South Korean Intelligence Service specifies that the correct year is 1987. Consequently, her age would be between 30 and 32 years old.
Like her older brothers, she received her education in Bern, Switzerland under the alias of Pak Mi-hyang. She was a student at the same public school as Kim Jong-un, Liebefeld-Steinhölzli, and lived in an austere apartment near the school.
In a short time, she attended ballet classes.
Japanese chef Kenji Fujimoto, who worked for the Kim family for several years, until his escape in 2001 detailed that Kim Jong-il adored his youngest daughter. Then also “supreme leader” called her “sweet Yo-jong” or “princess Yo-jong”.
It is speculated that in 2000 or 2001 “the princess” returned to North Korea, coinciding with the return of her brother, to finish her studies at Kim Il-sung University in Pyongyang. But she walked away from the public scene entirely for almost ten years, until her reappearance for her father’s funeral in late 2011.
South Korean intelligence describes that she usually “abuses her power” and punishes the members of her department for “minor offenses,” which is why she moved away from the Politburo for a year.
It is rumored that she has full knowledge of the internal disappearances and purges of the Party, to the extent of advising her brother. Additionally, she is compared to her aunt Kim Kyong-hui, who has inspired her in her political ambitions and has played similar roles for her siblings.
Kyong-hui took a seat at the Politburo after 30 years in public administration, with a marked patriarchal character, being the second woman to do so. Like her niece, she supported the construction of the image of her brother when the succession was enlisted, between 2010 and 2011.
Lim Jae-cheon, a specialist in the Kim family at the University of Korea in Seoul summarized “She cannot be a leader. She’s a woman,” considering North Korea’s energetic Confucian tradition. But she clarifies, “Kim Yo-jong is very influential.”