Spies from South Korea say North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has become a 308-pound insomniac who is caught up in a "vicious cycle" of heavy smoking and drinking.
The South Korean National Intelligence Service reported Wednesday that it's been "intensely" monitoring Kim's health, and even though reports in 2021 said he had lost almost 50 pounds, he's gained all that back and more, the spies said, citing their use of artificial intelligence to analyze recent pictures of him, The New York Post reported.
Yoo Sang-bum, the executive secretary of South Korea's parliamentary intelligence committee, said at the briefing that Kim is "estimated to weigh over 140 kilograms," or 308 pounds. He's thought to be about 5-feet-8.
Yoo further said Kim appears to be "engaging in excessive alcohol and tobacco consumption," leading to "significant sleep disorders."
"He appeared tired with clear dark circles around his eyes during his public appearance on May 16," the committee official said, adding that Kim has been hoarding "medications such as zolpidem, for the treatment of insomnia, as well as alcohol and foreign-brand cigarettes such as Marlboro and Dunhill."
North Korea's state media Yonhap quoted Kim in March as saying he always stays up until at least 5 a.m. working. The company does not report on Kim's health.
The South Korean intelligence source further suggested that "scratches and bruises" observed on Kim's arms could have been caused by "stress-induced dermatitis."
Kim has been facing speculation about his health for years, and early during the COVID pandemic, his extended public absences led to speculation that he was in a coma or had died.
The Korea Herald further reported that Kim's growing weight and hoarding of luxuries, including cigarettes from the United States, has come while food shortages have caused his country's people to starve.
There have been three times more starvation deaths this year than last, and deaths by suicide are up by 40%, the publication said.
Sandy Fitzgerald ✉
Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics.
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