Kim Jong-il tours military unit amid questions about his health

December 1st, 2008 - 6:36 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Dec 1 (ANI): A new set of photographs released by North Korea show its supreme leader, Kim Jong-il, appearing fit while touring a military unit, amid questions about his health.

The images, aired on state-run North Korean TV and distributed by South Koreas Unification Ministry, show Kim smiling during a visit to an air force unit.

The North Korean leader is dressed in a winter parka, brown fur hat, thick gloves and his trademark sunglasses.

A previous picture of Kim is reported to have been doctored. This image shows his shadow to be different from those of the soldiers alongside, The Telegraph reported.

The dictator praised the airmen for their diligence and urging them to remain disciplined in the face of enemy aggression, state-run media reported on Sunday.

The dispatch is the latest from Pyongyang in recent weeks portraying Kim as busy and active.

South Korean and US officials say Kim, 66, suffered a stroke in August. North Korea denies he was ever ill, but its reports have not provided definitive proof.

The report, which was not accompanied by photos, did not say exactly where or when Kims visit took place.

The KCNA dispatch comes at a time of rising tensions between the two Koreas. The North has moved to break off ties with the South.

North Korea announced last week that traffic through the North-South border would be severely restricted starting Monday, with popular tours to the border city of Kaesong halted and the number of South Koreans allowed into the North to work at a joint industrial park cut by more than half. (ANI)

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