Seoul, South Korea
The daughter of North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong Un, was revealed to the world in a first confirmed public appearance on Friday, state media KCNA reported.
Pictures shared by the state agency show his daughter standing next to the leader in a white puffer jacket, holding Kim’s hand, as they look at military hardware.
State media did not name the girl, who appeared to accompany Kim as he oversaw a test firing of a missile on Friday, said KCNA.
The agency claimed that North Korea fired a “new kind” of intercontinental ballistic missile on Friday from Pyongyang International Airfield, flying a distance of 999.2 kilometers (621 miles).
Very little is known about the private life of Kim Jong Un. But in 2013, former basketball star Dennis Rodman told the British daily the Guardian that Kim had a “baby” called “Ju Ae.” He said he spent time with the family, describing Kim as a “a good dad” and that he spoke to Kim’s wife, Ri Sol Ju.
“I held their baby Ju Ae and spoke with Ms. Ri as well,” he told the newspaper.
Speculation sprang up in 2012 that Ri might be pregnant after a photo carried by state media showed her wearing a long coat that could have been hiding a bump. But North Korean authorities kept quiet about the matter.
State media did not announce Kim and Ri’s marriage until July 2012, some three years after South Korean intelligence believes the wedding took place.
But that changed in 2018, when she was afforded the new title of “respected First Lady” by North Korean state media, a step up from the previously used “comrade” and a sign, according to analysts, that she was gaining her own personality cult.
Kim and Ri have three children together, according to South Korea’s National Intelligence Service (NIS).