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Asia Today ISSN 1861-4604 Friday, May 25, 2018

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Kim appears in North Korea media after long absence

Kim was on a visit to a housing development in a Pyongyang

Share on Facebook October 14, 2014, Reporter : BigNewsNet, Reader : 509

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SEOUL, South Korea - North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has appeared after a prolonged absence in public, putting at rest a flurry of speculation over his health and rumours that he may have fled the country after a possible coup.

A report and a series of pictures published on the front page of the state-run Rodong Sinmun newspaper on Tuesday showed Kim smiling and gesturing, with a black walking stick supporting him in his first public appearance in the last almost a month-and-a-half.

The pictures show him with a cane giving credence to the theory that he had been suffering a leg problem.

The official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said that Kim was on a visit to a housing development in a Pyongyang district where his government had just finished a cluster of homes for satellite engineers. But there was no indication of the day the event took place.

Surrounded by aides and wearing his signature dark buttoned suit, Kim, according to KCNA, "gave field guidance" during the visit to the new Wisong Scientists Residential District.

Kim, the KCNA report said, "inspected various parts" of the housing district in Pyongyang.

The leader expressed "great satisfaction" at the project and also posed for pictures with North Korean scientists who were to move into the new homes, the report added.

"Looking over the exterior of the apartment houses and public buildings, decorated with diverse coloured tiles, (Kim) expressed great satisfaction, saying they looked very beautiful," the agency said.

The news agency said that the 31-year-old visited the newly built Natural Energy Institute of the State Academy of Sciences.

"Our scientists are patriots who are devoting all their lives to building a rich and powerful nation," Kim was quoted as saying.

Kim was not seen publicly since attending a concert on Sep 3. He remained absent from a key event commemorating the anniversary of the founding of North Korea's Workers' Party.

Various media report speculated that Kim may have suffered physical injury or was ill. Some even reported possibility that Kim may have been removed from power in a coup. There were also rumours that he may have died..

Reports about his poor health got credence when a North Korean television late last month reported that said he was suffering from "discomfort". But there was no elaboration.> BNN

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