As reports of inter-Korea tensions show no signs of calming – Japan’s Defence Minister has revealed the state has “suspicions” about Kim Jong-un’s health.
At a press briefing today, Taro Kano said recent activities in North Korea were “quite strange,” reports CNN.
He said: “We have some suspicions about his [Kim Jong-un’s] health.”
Mr Kano went on to suggest the movements suggest Kim is “trying not to get infected” amid the coronavirus pandemic as the disease is spreading around the region and the world.
According to the minister, Japan and the US have been in talks exchanging information about the health of the dictator and the situation in North Korea.
However he said “I’m not allowed to discuss intelligence issues” when probed further.
This comes as it was reported North Korea is determined to build a ‘nuclear war deterrent’ to match the US.
A 5,500-word report published by the North Korean Foreign Ministry has outlined their plan to ‘combat American aggressions’, reports NKNews.
Mr Kano made clear Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party has planned acquiring weapons in case of an escalation, which would ensure the country is able to strike at an enemy missile base.
Previously, Tokyo scrapped the US-built Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System – however, Japan will look at options to combat North Korea’s ballistic missiles, reports CNN.
Rumours surrounding Kim Jong-un’s health have been circulating for weeks after he vanished from the public eye, with some suggesting he may have died.
Earlier it was reported Kim Jong-un’s sister has released a major statement blasting North Korean deserters in an unprecedented move which has fuelled speculation over who is running the hermit kingdom.
North Korea has also warned a new war between it and South Korea may lead the communist nation’s leader Kim Jong-un to order a nuclear strike against the US.