Kim Jong-il's Eldest Son Drinks with S.Korean Tourists

      March 10, 2010 07:31

      North Korean leader Kim Jong-il inspects an air force unit in May 2009. In recent photos including this one, Kim is shown with discolored hands and fingernails, common symptoms of kidney disease. /Yonhap

      North Korean leader Kim Jong-il's eldest son Kim Jong-nam, who has reportedly been passed over in the succession, can sometimes be found drinking with South Koreans at a bar in Macau.

      A government official on Tuesday said,  "I've heard that some South Koreans were watching Kim Jong-nam at a bar in Macau recently because he looked familiar, and he suggested they have a drink together. So they drank and had a chat."

      The official said a visit to China by Kim senior is "a possibility." Regarding Kim Jong-il's health, he said the dictator seems to be "too busy" to have a serious health problem.

      Asked about North Korea's announcement that it detained four South Koreans for alleged illegal entry, the official said, "There was a tip from families about two people who have gone missing after a business failure, so we're checking their whereabouts. But we don't know whether these two are among the four people allegedly in detention."

      "It'll be difficult to correctly identify them until the North does," he added.

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