What Did Ri Sol Ju’s Absent Means For North Korea?
Ri Sol Ju, wife of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, broke all speculations about her absence by appearing a at a musical performance for the anniversary of the birth of former leader Kim Jong Il. It is known as the Day of the Shining Star in North Korea.
The audiences cheered for Ri Sol Ju
The official news agency of North Korea, KCNA, said that the crowd cheered to welcome Ri Sol Ju with the General Secretary. There was thunderous applause in the auditorium and the couple were treated with songs like “People Are of a Single Mind”. Also, newspapers published pictures of the couple on their front pages.
Speculation about Ri Sol Ju’s absence
The year long absence of Ri Sol Ju from state media fueled doubts about her health due to coronavirus. But her re-appearance suggested increased regime confidence in the quarantine situation of the country, said Rachel Minyoung Lee, an independent political analyst and one-time associate of US in relation to North Korea.
But South Korea’s spy agency gave a different reason. It said that Ri Sol Ju could have been taking care of their children to avoid exposure to the pandemic. The agency also said that North Korea hacked Pfizer Inc. to draw information on its COVID-19 vaccine program and treatment.
Ri Sol Ju’s life so far
Ri started as a cheerleader in a North Korean cheer leading squad and went on to marrying Kim Jong Un in 2009. The couple are expected to have three children, but there’s no official word about their kids.