China Sends Medical Team to North Korea After Kim Jong-un Undergoes Heart Surgery
The Chinese government has reportedly dispatched a team including medical experts to North Korea to advise North Korean leader, Kim Jong Un, on his care after he underwent a life-saving heart surgery during the Coronavirus outbreak.
The trip by the Chinese doctors and officials comes amid conflicting reports that the leader of North Korea was in a "fragile" condition after the surgery.
According to Reuters, a delegation led by a senior member of the Chinese Communist Party's International Liaison Department left Beijing for North Korea on Thursday, two of the people said. The department is the main Chinese body dealing with neighbouring North Korea.
The sources declined to be identified given the sensitivity of the matter.
Daily NK, a Seoul-based website, reported earlier this week that Kim was staying at a countryside villa outside Pyongyang while he recovered from heart surgery and that his condition was improving after he was conspicuously absent from events on 15 April commemorating the birth of his grandfather Kim Il-sung, the founder of the nation - one of North Korea's most important holiday celebrations.
Dozens of top Government officials attended a flamboyant military parade at the Kumsusan Palace of the Sun on the 15th of April, but Kim was nowhere to be seen.
The publication reported that Kim had heart surgery on April 12. because of "excessive smoking, obesity, and overwork," and is now receiving treatment in a villa in Hyangsan County following his procedure.
Before now, there were reports suggesting that Kim was in grave danger after the surgery. But South Korean government officials challenged the reports saying they had detected no signs of unusual activity in North Korea.
On Thursday, U.S. President Donald Trump also downplayed earlier reports that Kim was gravely ill. 'I think the report was incorrect,' Trump told reporters, but he declined to say if he had been in touch with North Korean officials.