Newly released satellite photos appear to give credence to reports that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is hiding out at a coastal resort town and not dead.
According to Fox News, the recent images appear to show a series of leisure boats often used by Kim at his exclusive villa in the city of Wonsan, on the country’s northeastern coast. The North Korean leader was known to have a 95-foot yacht, which had four double berths and a number of other amenities. The boats seen in photos released this week appeared to support the idea that he was staying there.
“News about the leisure boats came after satellite photos released Saturday by 38 North, a Washington-based website specializing in North Korea studies, showed increased activity in the resort town of Wonsan in April,” the Fox News report noted.
As The Inquisitr reported, there were other rumors from North Korean sources that Kim was actually seen walking in the port city of Wonsan after having traveled there on his private train. The report claimed that he retreated to the resort after several people close to him had tested positive for coronavirus.
There have been a series of conflicting reports about the health of North Korea’s leader, including several over the weekend claiming he had died after falling into a vegetative state following a heart surgery gone awry. Speculation about his health had been building for weeks after Kim was not present at an April 15 ceremony marking the 108th birth anniversary of his late grandfather, the country’s founding father.
The North Korean government has added to the confusion by remaining tight-lipped on Kim’s status, not issuing any kind of statement about his health or whereabouts.
But other top South Korean officials seemed to confirm reports that Kim was not dead, but rather staying in the coastal resort.
“He has been staying in the Wonsan area since April 13,” Chung-in Moon, foreign policy adviser to South Korean President Moon Jae-in, told Fox News. “No suspicious movements have so far been detected.”
President Donald Trump also cast doubt on the claims that Kim had died, telling reporters this weekend that he believed rumors of his botched heart surgery and death were based on old information. The U.S. president has publicly wished the North Korean leader well. The two have worked closely through a series of unprecedented meetings in which Trump has pushed the country to dismantle its nuclear weapons program.