For several weeks, rumors that a North Korea coup d’etat had ousted Kim Jong-un from power have persisted. Fueled by the leader’s absence from public view and rekindled by the recent and unexpected delegation from North Korea to South Korea for talks, the rumors continue. It has been about a month since Kim Jong-un has been seen publicly.
In a recent report, The Inquisitr chronicled the claim by a former North Korean official that Jong-un was ousted almost a year ago. The United States State Department, however, has said that they are unaware of a North Korea coup attempt, successful or not, pointing to some internal propaganda videos produced by the nation that include Kim Jong-un. He can be seen in the video below visiting the Memorial Palace where his father is buried. Kim walks with a pronounced limp in the video.
Fueling the North Korea coup rumors further, however, is the lockdown of Pyongyang, the capitol of North Korea, which the Arutz Sheva says only happens when a coup has happened or is suspected. This report is bolstered by The Telegraph, which says the travel ban locking down Pyongyang started on September 27.
Here in the United States, however, Time Magazine says that Kim Jong-un is “just sick,” and that there is no North Korea coup conspiracy happening. Instead, they point to videos like the one above and other reports that the North Korean Marshal is suffering from gout or something similar, causing the limp. They also point out that this isn’t the first time the leader in North Korea has disappeared from public view for a time, though never for this long since taking power after his father’s death. Still, coup rumors may be overstated.
“If there had been regicide or revolt in Pyongyang, it’s unlikely the wheels of North Korean diplomacy would spin like business as usual.”
The Washington Post backs up this story with a report that Kim Jong-un has had ankle surgery, and that there has been no North Korea coup, citing a South Korean newspaper as a source. The Chosun Ilbo also reported that Kim had fractured both of his ankles and received surgery in mid-September and is recovering.
The source for the news continues to say that after fracturing his right ankle in June, the leader of North Korea ignored doctors and continued with on-site visits, causing him to fracture his other ankle as he favored the first. The surgery, says the source, happened in Bonghwa Clinic, a hospital for the elite in North Korea. So no coup, according to that source.
The good news is that the successful Korean Games seem to have improved relations between North and South, and the United States told Yon Hap News that they fully support improved inter-Korean relations. So North Korea coup d’etat or not, things are looking up in Asia.