Kim Yo-Jong (right) and a man believed to be her husband (left). Yo-Jong appears to be smiling (Image: Kyodo News)
One photo is causing a stir around the world.
It is an image of Kim Jong-Un’s sister, Kim Yo-Jong, that appeared on June 17 in the Labor Daily, the official newspaper of the Workers’ Party of Korea. The newspaper reported that Kim Jong-un and his wife, followed by Yo-jong and other party officials, were providing medical supplies to households where people had been infected with acute intestinal infections. In the image, Yo-Jong is seen with a man holding a box that appears to contain the medicine. The man is the focus of attention.
“The man is said to be Yo-Jong’s husband. In the image released in January 2003, Yo-jong was wearing a ring on the ring finger of her left hand, which led to speculation that she might be married. There are several reasons to believe that the man in this image is her husband. The very close proximity of the man to Ms. Yo-Jong. The facial expressions of the two, although masked, are seen as soft.”
“An important point is the posture of the man. Normally to Kim Jong-Un’s sister, one must bend over at the waist to show respect. The man in the photo, however, stands tall and straight. This is a sign of an equal relationship. In the future, he will disclose his position and name as Yo-Jong’s husband. There is a possibility that he will gradually make himself known at home and abroad.”
Various people have been named as Yo-Jong’s husband. The most promising is Choe Song, the second son of Choe Ryong-Hae, a powerful man who has held important positions such as chairman of the Standing Committee of the Supreme People’s Assembly, as reported by the Yonhap News.
Why the Theory Was Quickly Discredited
“However, this theory was quickly debunked by the media. This is because Choe Ryong-Hae is a troubled man who has frequently been involved in scandals involving women. Kim Jong-Un would never accept the son of a troubled man as her sister’s husband. In fact, Choe Ryong-Hae has been demoted several times due to his own troubles.”
So far, nothing is known for sure about Yo-Jong’s husband. Lee Sang Yong, editor-in-chief of Daily NK Japan and an expert on the situation on the Korean Peninsula, explained,
“When you are in Yo-Jong’s class, you can’t get married based on romantic feelings alone. His partner must be an elite and a person of considerable power. The partner must be a competent person who can eventually take charge of party management.”
What was North Korea’s intention in releasing the image of the man who is believed to be Yo-Jong’s husband?
He continues, “It is an appeal for rejuvenation. Yo-Jong is said to be in her early 30s. The man is probably in his 40s. It is a sign of determination that the younger generation, rather than the older heavyweights, will support North Korea in the future.”
“Ms. Yo-Jong is the de facto number two. I believe that this is also intended to emphasize that even if Kim Jong-Un should encounter any problems, such as health issues, he can rest easy knowing that Yo-Jong is there to support him. Considering that Yo-Jong has no worries about the future because her husband is supporting her well.”
The latest developments in North Korea, as revealed by a single photograph. The day will soon come when Yo-Jong’s husband will reveal his true identity.