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Kim Jong Un Reportedly In Coma; Sister Kim Yo-Jong To Take Over

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Is Kim Jong Un In A Coma? New Details On Status Of North Korean Leader

A new report suggests that controversial North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is in a coma, and his sister Kim Yo Jong is taking over where her brother left off. 

This isn't the first time questions about the dictator's health has been raised, and reports that filter into American media are spotty, at best. However, we decided to take a look and see what really is going on in North Korea and whether the rumors about the North Korean dictator's health are real. 

Is Kim Jong Un in a coma?

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Is Kim Jong Un dead? 

The first rumors of Kim Jong Un's demise came back in April 2020, when Japanese media had reported that the North Korean dictator had suffered a heart attack. However, shortly after those initial reports of his demise were released, video footage has emerged showing him at official state functions, thereby debunking rumors of his demise. Now, however, the rumors of his demise have started up again and this time, Roy Calley — who has spent years documenting the so-called "hermit state" — believes that all this mystery surrounding Un's state of health is indicative that he is, in fact, dead. "I honestly believe he's dead but you just can't tell with that country. I could be in Pyongyang now and be none the wiser," he said.

Is Kim Jong Un in a coma?

While British media believes Kim Jong Un is dead, American media is under the impression that Kim Jong Un is merely in a coma. Chang Song-min, who is a former agent to the late South Korean president Kim Dae-jung, says that while Kim Jong Un is still alive, he believes he's in a coma and prior to entering the compromised state, he delegated his most important duties to his aides. “I assess him to be in a coma, but his life has not ended,” he said.

Is Kim Jong Un's sister succeeding Kim Jong Un?

Kim Jong Un's sister, Kim Yo-Jong, is reportedly poised to take her brother's place, it turns out that no formal succession order has been laid out by the North Korean dictator. However, according to Chang Song-min, Kim Yo-Jong is his de facto second-in-command,and according to Korean media, she's already been briefed on her duties if she does, indeed, take over from her brother. "[Kim Yo-Jong is] relieve (Kim’s) stress from his reign and avert culpability in the event of policy failure,” they said.

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Does Kim Jong Un have a problem with K-pop? 

About a month ago, reports started emerging that Kim Jong Un had a problem with K-pop — so much so that its growing popularity, especially in the West, caused him to want to "wage war" on America. According to these reports, the dictator was very concerned that South Korea — where K-pop originates — was contributing to the destruction of the "national identity" of North Korea by infecting the world with the sweet, sweet sounds of BTS and Blackpink. However, if Kim Jong Un has been in a coma all this time, the question begs itself: where did these reports of "the speaker" not liking K-pop come from in the first place? 

Kim Yo-Jong has been confirmed as Kim Jong Un's second-in-command. 

While it's unclear if Kim Jong Un is really dead, South Korea's central intelligence agency has confirmed that Kim Jong Un has, in fact, passed over some of his duties to his sister, Kim Yo-Jong. However, as of two days ago, Representative Kim Byung-kee has confirmed that while Kim Yo-Jong has some responsibilities, Kim Jong Un retains "absolute power" in North Korea. 

What's going on with Kim Jong Un? 

As of this writing, it's unclear what's going on with Kim Jong Un until we get specific confirmation from North Korea which is, of course, very rare given the secrecy the isolated nation keeps. We don't know, for sure, if Kim Jong Un is alive, dead, or merely in a coma. However, we will keep you posted on all updates as they happen. 

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Bernadette Giacomazzo is an editor, writer, photographer and publicist whose work has been featured in People, Teen Vogue, Us Weekly, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Post, and more.