North Korea’s Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un has died, or is on his death bed with no hope for recuperation, multiple Chinese and Japanese media outlets have reported.

As per the details, a vice director of Hong Kong Satellite Television (HKSTV) — a Beijing-backed broadcast network in Hong Kong — claimed that Kim was dead, citing a “very solid source”. Her post on the Chinese messaging app Weibo has been shared widely on social media, according to a report in the International Business Times.

The claim comes hours after a Japanese magazine reported that the North Korean dictator was in a “vegetative state” ever since he underwent heart surgery earlier this month.


Other unconfirmed reports, attributed to senior party sources in Beijing, said an operation to insert a stent went wrong because the surgeon’s hands were shaking so badly.

The weekly Shukan Gendai reported Friday that a Chinese medic sent to North Korea as part of a team to treat Kim believed a delay in a simple procedure left the leader severely ill, Reuters reported.

A Chinese expert told the magazine that Kim, believed to be 36, clutched his chest and fell to the ground on a visit to the countryside earlier this month. A doctor accompanying Kim performed CPR and took him to a nearby hospital.

North Korean media hasn’t mentioned Kim’s health or whereabouts, even though reports by foreign media outlets have sparked international speculation about his well-being.

The hashtag #KimJongUndead continues to trend on Twitter without any proof of the leader’s death.

According to Independent, if rumours of Kim’s health are true, his sister, Kim Yo-jong, will emerge as the custodian of power in North Korea.

She is the youngest daughter of former supreme leader Kim Jong-il and an alternate member of the politburo — principal policymaking committee. Yo-jong is also the vice director of the Propaganda and Agitation Department of the Workers’ Party of Korea.