During public activities last week, the Supreme leader appeared with a dark spot on the back of his head, sparking concerns over his health. The cause of the large spot or bruise, which was covered in a bandage in some footage, is still unknown.
Kim attended a military event from July 24 to 27, as well as in footage of a war veterans conference and related events held from July 27 to 29.
Strangely, there were no signs of the mark in a previous public appearance at a politburo meeting on June 29.
Images released of the leader with musicians on July 11 did not show the back of his head.
Over recent months there have rumours about the health of the Supreme leader after he appeared visibly slimmer in recent interviews.
Speaking to Korean Central Television in June, one member of the public voiced their concerns over Mr Kim’s health.
Rüdiger Frank, professor for East Asian economics and society at the Institute for East Asian Studies at the University of Vienna said his weight loss is a “political calculation”.
Speaking on the ntv podcast, Mr Frank said: “The fact that the Führer has lost weight has actually been explicitly discussed even in the North Korean state media.
“There was an interview with a concerned citizen who said the topic was ‘talk of the town’.
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“We can therefore take it for granted.”
Vipin Narang, an associate professor of political science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), added that “if [the sudden weight loss] is due to a health condition though, the jockeying for his succession may already be happening behind the scenes, and that volatility could be trouble for the outside world” if he were to pass away.
Mike Brodka, an intelligence officer for U.S. Special Operations Command in South Korea, told NK News: “On the surface, noticeable weight loss may not mean much, but it can provide clues to other information that intelligence collectors look for.”
Fears over Kim’s health were raised after the dictator was not seen in public since May 6 and missed several key important dates in the North Korean calendar.
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This was not the first Kim disappeared throughout the coronavirus pandemic last year, sparking fears over his health.
Back in February last year, the Supreme leader vanished for nearly three weeks.
A few months later, he disappeared for 12 days and rumours he had died or was seriously ill following a botched heart operation began to surface.
However, a month later in May, the secretive state released footage showing Kim visiting a newly-opened fertiliser plant, which appeared to quash the health rumours.
But the video didn’t quell all critics, with people speculating that a “body double” of the Supreme leader was used.
However, a month later in May, the secretive state released footage showing Kim visiting a newly-opened fertiliser plant in his country appearing to quash the health rumours.
Bizarre rumours began to emerge the Supreme leader used a “body double” following speculation he had died.
Some people claimed it was not Kim after images emerged three weeks after his disappearance and that he is using a body double.
They insisted the North Korean leader’s features including his nose, ears and hair were not the same.
Human rights activist Jennifer Zeng first pointed out differences and tweeted at the time: “Is the Kim Jong-un appearing on May 1 the real one?”