Kim Jong-nam

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Kim Jong-nam (May 10, 1971 - February 13, 2017) was the eldest son of Kim Jong-il, the former leader of North Korea.

He tried to enter Japan using a fake passport in May 2001. This was to visit Disneyland. This caused his father to not approve of him.[1] Kim Jong-nam's younger half-brother Kim Jong-un was made the heir in September 2010.[2]

In June 2010, Kim Jong-nam gave a brief interview to the Associated Press in Macau.[3] He told the reporter that he had "no plans" to defect to Europe. The press had recently said this.[3] Kim Jong-nam lived in an apartment on the southern tip of Macau's Coloane Island until 2007.[4] An anonymous South Korean official reported in October 2010 that Jong-nam had not lived in Macau for "months", and now goes between China and "another country."[4]

When his father died, Kim Jong-nam did not attend the funeral. This was to avoid rumours on the succession.[5]

He was assassinated in Malaysia on February 13, 2017, which is believed to be ordered by his half-brother Kim Jong-un.[6]

Personal life[change | change source]

The South Korean newspaper The Chosun Ilbo said that Kim Jong-nam has two wives, at least one mistress, and several children.[4] His first wife Shin Jong-hui (born c. 1980) and their son Kum-sol (born c. 1996) live at a home called Dragon Villa on the northern outskirts of Beijing.[4] His second wife Lee Hye-kyong (born c. 1970), their son Han-sol (born c. 1995) and their daughter Sol-hui (born c. 1998) live in an apartment building in Macau.[4] Jong-nam's mistress, former Air Koryo flight attendant So Yong-la (born c. 1980), also lives in Macau.[4]

Jong-nam is often given attention by the media for his gambling and extravagant spending.[7]

References[change | change source]

  1. Huffington Post article: "Kim Jong Nam, North Korean Leader's Son, Denies Plans To Defect."
  2. Christian Science Monitor article: "Kim Jong-un confirmed North Korean heir ahead of massive military parade."
  3. 3.0 3.1 Seattle Times article: "NKorean leader's son gives interview."
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 Chosun Ilbo article: "Where Is Kim Jong-il's Eldest Son?."
  5. "Kim's eldest in 'secret visit' to see body (AFP, January 1, 2012)".
  6. "North Korea suspected behind murder of leader's half-brother: U.S..." Reuters. 15 February 2017 – via
  7. "WordMean Publishing: Independent Publishing Done Differently". WordMean Publishing: Independent Publishing Done Differently. Archived from the original on 2019-02-15. Retrieved 2019-02-11.