Is that Kim Jong-un's BODY DOUBLE? Latest photos spark crazy theories as experts say teeth 'give it away'
The North Korean state media released images and video of the 36-year-old dictator at a ribbon-cutting event
The latest pictures of North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un making an appearance at a public event after nearly 20 days of mysterious disappearance has sparked conspiracy theories about how the leader featured in the new video could actually be a body double.
The North Korean state media, on Saturday, May 1, released images and video of the 36-year-old dictator at a ribbon-cutting event, bringing the widespread rumors of his possible death or ill-health to a halt. The pictures, however, have now fueled speculations that a lookalike could have been placed in the video to let the world know that the Pyongyang tyrant was alive.
Shortly after the release of the pictures, web sleuths took to social media to note the discrepancies in facial, hairline and dental features of the Kim featured in the latest event when compared with his previous appearances, New York Post reported.
Human rights activist Jennifer Zeng was the first to point out the dissimilarities between the two “versions” of Kim, marking the differences in their teeth and ears. "Is the Kim Jong-un appearing on May 1 the real one?” she asked as she shared a side-by-side comparison of Kim’s “old and new” pictures at different events.
Shortly after Zeng pointed out the difference, several others also shared side-by-side photos of the hermit nation's leader, highlighting the differences between the two "versions."
Former British Member of Parliament Louise Mensch also shared the comparative images on Twitter, writing: "Don’t know, don’t care. See no reason to alter my earlier stance. These aren’t the same man."
One Twitter user @SeptAugustus wrote: "The chipped incisor is a definite giveaway it’s not Kim Jong-un. So why a body double? If he’s dead why not just announce it and crown his successor?"
Writer Akilah Hughes also considered the possibility of Kim employing body doubles, tweeting: "We really believing that’s Kim Jong-un when it could absolutely be a dude w plastic surgery?? If I was a murderous dictator I’d have clones."
Reports of Kim's ill health or possible death emerged last month after a South Korean outlet, Daily NK, claimed that Kim had undergone a cardiovascular system procedure in Pyongyang on April 12 because of "excessive smoking, obesity and overworking."
Days after Kim reappeared after his disappearance, a former Pyongyang diplomat issued an apology for speculating that the dictator was probably so ill he could not stand. Former deputy ambassador to Britain and one of the defectors, Thae Yong-ho, issued an apology on Monday, May 4, for his claims about Kim's health. "I am aware that one of the reasons why many of you voted for me as a lawmaker is that I would make an accurate analysis and projections on North Korean issues," he said in a statement.
"I feel the blame and heavy responsibility. Whatever the reasons, I apologize to everyone," he went on. Thae was elected to the South Korea parliament last month, the Guardian reported.
Kim's health came under scrutiny after he gave a miss to an annual visit to the Kumsusan Palace of the Sun for the 108th birthday of his late grandfather, state founder Kim Il-sung on April 15.