South Korea Thinks Kim Jong-un's Aunt Is In 'Critical Condition'

Kim Kyong-hui North KoreaAPIn this Dec. 16, 2012 photo, Kim Kyong Hui, who is North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s aunt, attends a national memorial service on the eve of the first anniversary of the death of late leader Kim Jong Il in Pyongyang, North Korea.

The powerful aunt of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un appears to be in critical condition stemming from heart problems, according to senior South Korean officials speaking to Yonhap News.

Last seen in public on Sep. 9, the 67-year-old Kim Kyong-hui is considered a highly influential figure in the country, still remaining part of Kim Jong-un’s inner circle even after the young leader executed her husband over a business dispute.

“We believe [she] is in a critical condition,” the official told Yonhap, noting that her heart problems appeared to have worsened due to alcoholism.

As with many reports coming from a closed-off society like North Korea, it’s hard to say for sure what the fate of Hui actually is. Two days ago, rumours surfaced of her death — coming from a fairly reliable source in China.

However, this latest report from Yonhap, South Korea’s largest news agency, lends credence to suspicions that Hui may at the very least be facing health problems.

What is very odd is her absence from the anniversary of her brother Kim Jong-il’s death on Dec. 17, with the country celebrating his life and achievements with memorials in his honour.

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