When it comes to information about the North Korean supremo Kim Jong Un and his family, very little is known and is put on display in public space.
In an uncommon occurrence, the North Korean premier revealed his daughter to the world for the first time on Saturday, North Korean news agency KCNA reported.
The rare picture shows the father-daughter duo overseeing the launch of the most giant ballistic missile in the east Asian country – known for its affinity towards nuclear warheads.
This development is surprising because the regime has publicly acknowledged her existence for the first time.
On Friday, North Korea test-fired a Hwasong-17 intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).
Photos released by KCNA, while not revealing her name, showed Kim’s daughter in a puffy white coat, holding hands with her father and observing the massive missile leaving the horizon.
“This is the first observed occasion where we have seen Kim Jong Un’s daughter at a public event”, said Michael Madden, a North Korea leadership expert at the U.S.-based Stimson Center.
“It is highly significant and represents a certain degree of comfort on Kim Jong Un’s part that he would bring her out in public in such fashion,” he added.
Experts believe Kim is the father of as many as three children – two girls and a boy. Observers who keep a keen eye on the regime’s activities spotted one of those children in a video of a gathering during a national holiday in September.
Previously, a hint about Kim’s daughter was made by retired American basketball star Dennis Rodman in 2013. He said the North Korean leader had a “baby” daughter named Ju Ae.
In a chat with The Guardian, Rodman shed light on his starry-eyed visit and said that he had held the infant while spending time with Kim and his family.
As per an Al Jazeera report, the sportsperson faced a massive backlash during his visit to North Korea – where he played an exhibition game.
Rodman was accused of pandering to the ruthless dictator, who was under United States’ radar for getting his uncle executed. Other than that, the regime was holding Kenneth Bae, an American citizen, captive for unspecified “anti-state crimes”.
As per Madden, Ju Ae should be about 12-13 years of age, implying that she would be gearing up to attend a university or serve in the military.
“This would indicate that she will be educated and trained to go into leadership — it could be preparing for her to assume the central leader’s position or she could become an adviser and behind-the-scenes player like her aunt,” he said.
To date, it is unclear who would fill in Kim’s position in case of his incapacitation. Based on the little intel that the analysts have, they have speculated that Kim’s sister and loyalists could form a regency until a successor comes of age.
Click Here: cronulla sharks team jersey
Madden said that the appearance of Kim’s daughter might hint at fourth-generation hereditary succession and the North Korean elites need to prepare for that eventuality.
“Her presence is for an elite audience,” he said.
As per reports, Kim’s wife, Ri Sol Ju, was also present at the missile launch event in a rare occurrence.
“Whenever Ri Sol Ju appears, there is strategic messaging involved. Normally designed to tamp down tensions, counter other aggressive messaging (like tests), or show Kim family cohesion in times of internal troubles,” said Ken Gause, a North Korea leadership expert with CNA, a U.S.-based non-profit research organization.
Her presence also fits a trend of Kim “normalizing” politics inside the regime and the dynamics around his position as supreme leader, Gause added.
(With inputs from Reuters)
For more on news and current affairs from around the world please visit Indiatimes News.