The rumors of Kim Jong-un’s death seem to have been greatly exaggerated.
Kim’s vanishing act has pushed his little sister, Kim Yo-jong, into the spotlight, with speculation that she might become the Kim family dynasty’s first female leader.
It has long been rumored that Yo-jong, who is sometimes described as the Ivanka Trump of North Korea, is the brains behind her brother’s brawn.
If something were to happen to big bro, she’s the obvious choice for supreme leader. Kim’s male relatives are either too young or uninterested: His big brother, Kim Jong-chul, seemingly stays out of politics, preferring to play guitar and obsess over Eric Clapton.
In recent years she has started to venture on to the world stage, representing Kim at the 2018 Winter Olympics, and publicly praising Donald Trump.
Yo-jong has also already proved herself equal to any man: in 2017, the US Treasury Department blacklisted her for “severe human rights abuses”.
“North Korea … is one of the most male chauvinistic societies in the world, but bloodline supplemented by status in the Korea Workers’ party supersedes gender,” one expert told Bloomberg.
[Excerpts of Guardian article by Arwa Mahdawi]