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Ciara O'Rourke
By Ciara O'Rourke April 22, 2020

There are no breaking news reports that Kim Jong Un has died

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  • Rumors and anonymously-sourced news reports have fueled speculation about North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s health. 
  • There are no breaking news reports that he has died.

Rumors and news reports citing anonymous sources have fueled speculation over the health of Kim Jong Un, North Korea’s secretive leader. 

Questions about Kim started after he missed a state event on April 15 marking the birthday of his grandfather, according to the New York Times. A story published on Daily NK, a Seoul-based website, said soon after that Kim was recovering from heart surgery. 

South Korean officials are skeptical of such reports, according to the Times, but an April 22 YouTube video titled "Breaking News Kim Jong Un has pass (sic) away" begins by showing a photo of the North Korean leader with this text over him: "From different news reports about Kim Jon Un’s death."

A woman then appears on the screen and says: "The leader of North Korea, Kim Jong Un, has passed away. According to political, economical, cultural, military and journalistic analysis, Kim Jong Un, the leader of North Korea, has passed away."

The video then cuts to clips from news coverage about his condition after his surgery before returning to the woman. The leader’s alleged death is not mentioned in the clips. 

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"This is not a joke," she says. "According to my analysis through my head, heart and value, the aura, the leader of North Korea has already passed away."

This post was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Facebook.) 

Though there are posts online wondering if Kim is dead, we found no evidence supporting that claim — and certainly no breaking news reports that he has died, as the YouTube video says. 

Rather, Foreign Policy reports that no one knows if he’s ill or not. The Washington Post says there is no verified evidence that Kim is in "grave danger," as an anonymous U.S. official quoted by CNN said.

We rate this YouTube video False.


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There are no breaking news reports that Kim Jong Un has died

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