According to Twitter, the BBC, Time, South and apparently North Korean media, Kim Jong-Il, the leader of North Korea has died, aged 69.

He is believed to have died of an acute myocardial infarction, like his father, Kim Il-Sung. Believed to have suffered from a stroke in 2008, Kim Jong-Il’s health has been far from good for a while. He is believed to have suffered from heart disease and diabetes.

It is believed he died on Saturday, with information only being released by North Korean media today.

Thus, it seems likely that any power struggle would already be over. His favoured son, Kim Jong-Un, is being refered to in North Korean media as “the Great Successor” so he seems the likely candidate to now lead North Korea – there are problems with this however, as he is only around the age of 27. He has been groomed as such, including visiting China in 2009 to be ‘presented’ to Beijing, and may be a four-star general and Vice-Chair (now acting Chair) of the DPRK Central Military Commission, but it is likely that his uncle, Jang Song Thaek, will rule behind the curtains for now, as the “Great Successor” is untrained and untested. There are, of course, concerns that the country could see a military coup, but with the veil of secrecy surrounding North Korea, it is difficult to tell if this is likely or even possible.

South Korea is on a defensive footing, with most of the country on emergency alert – I detail the affects here and here.

Conflicting stories abound on twitter, so take all information with a pinch of salt. Talking about twitter, following me for all the latest.

More updates as they are revealed.

About these ads