The North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un has not appeared in public for more than two weeks. However, there was an important national holiday in the country last Saturday, which he had never missed. Possibly his absence has to do with the coronavirus.
China’s neighbor has not yet reported any cases of the new coronavirus. Still, Kim’s absence may have to do with fear of the virus, says South Korean news agency Yonhap.
Kim was last seen in public at a concert in Pyongyang on January 25 on the occasion of the Chinese New Year. Since then, he has nowhere appeared and has not been mentioned by the state media, with one exception.
Last Saturday was the Day of the Building of the Army, a prestigious national holiday since 1948 and an opportunity for mass gatherings. Kim has always been present at military events before and on this holiday until this year.
However, this year it was only briefly reported that senior officers visited monuments in honor of Kim’s grandfather and father, Kim Il-sung and Kim Jong-il. The current leader has sent flowers for those ceremonies, according to the state newspaper Rodong Sinmun.
The regime in Pyongyang is doing everything it can to keep the Chinese virus out. The traffic with China has been largely halted.