Kim Jong Un’s mysterious daughter Ju Ae makes another public appearance

The 9-year-old daughter of North Korean strongman Kim Jong Un made another public appearance, fueling fresh speculation about the succession to the Hermit Kingdom.

Ju Ae, one of three children Kim is believed to have, has now appeared alongside her father twice in one week after living in relative obscurity in the isolated Asian nation.

State media’s description of Ju Ae as the dictator’s “most beloved” or “most precious” child leads some experts to believe she may be the kingdom’s heir apparent.

“It’s certainly remarkable,” Ankit Panda, a North Korean expert with the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, told PBS News Hour.

“The photo of Kim Ju Ae standing next to her father while being feted by technicians and scientists involved in the recent ICBM launch would support the idea that this is the beginning of her positioning as a potential successor,” said Panda.

“State media, which underscores her father’s love for her, I think further underscores that,” he said. “After all, both of her public appearances were related to strategic nuclear weapons – the crown jewel of North Korea’s national defense capabilities.

“It doesn’t seem like a coincidence to me,” Panda added.

Pictured at his side is Ju Ae, the young daughter of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
Ju Ae, the young daughter of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, has made two public appearances in a week after years of living in obscurity.

The young woman’s most recent appearance came when she was photographed alongside her father with a group of scientists and technicians believed to be working on North Korea’s Hwasong-17 missile, Kim’s most recent nuclear obsession, PBS reported.

The images were released Sunday by the Korean Central News Agency, the country’s state-controlled media outlet.

Last weekend, the cheeky girl was revealed to most of the outside world as she walked hand-in-hand with her father at a nuclear missile testing site.

Kim’s private life has remained largely secret outside the country, but experts believe the dictator and his wife Ri Sol Ju, who married in 2009, have three children.

King Jong Un's daughter Jue Ae is pictured walking hand in hand with her father.
The sudden appearance of Kim Jong Un’s daughter Ju Ae has sparked speculation about North Korea’s successor.

“We have been told that Kim has three children, including possibly a son,” Soo Kim, a security analyst at RAND Corporation in California, told PBS News Hour.

“If this is true and we assume the male child — to be announced — will be the heir, is Ju Ae really Kim’s ‘most precious’ from a succession standpoint?” said Kim. “I think it’s too early to draw any conclusions.” Kim Jong Un’s mysterious daughter Ju Ae makes another public appearance


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