North Korea watchers are eager to get the skinny on leader Kim Jong Un’s apparent weight loss — which some speculate might be a sign of deteriorating health.
The famously corpulent despot looked noticeably slimmer in photos released by state media Saturday — after not being seen publicly for a month, the Guardian reported.
South Korea-based NK News, which analyzed photos of Kim addressing a ruling party politburo meeting last week, said he appeared to have lost a “significant amount of weight.”
If he lost the weight intentionally for health reasons, that “likely improves his position at home,” Vipin Narang, an associate professor of political science at MIT, told the outlet Tuesday.
Being more secure at home “in turn provides more predictability perhaps for regional actors like Japan, the ROK and the US who may have greater confidence that he will be running the show,” Narang said.
However, it’s a very different outlook if it is due to ill