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Kim Jong-un appears to have lost even more weight leading to suggestions he has had a gastric band fitted.
New snaps of North Korea's supreme leader show him to be slimmer than at any point during his ten-year reign.
Since taking charge of the secretive state in 2011, Kim had gradually piled on the pounds which inside sources claimed was the result of work-related stress, drinking, heavy smoking, and a high-fat diet.
Despite his diminutive 5ft 7in stature, South Korea's National Intelligence Service claimed his weight peaked at a hefty 22 stone last year.
Now however as he shows off a slimmed-down face and trim torso, Kim is estimated to weigh in a whopping 2st 8lbs lighter.
In April the 37-year-old was reportedly asked by a concerned comrade asked him to rest up and lose weight, which has evidently happened one way or another.
Kim's usually tight-fitting pinstripe suit appeared noticeably baggy when he met commanders and political officers of the Korean People's Army in Pyongyang on Friday, The Sun reports.
While North Korea was struggling with food shortages, its leader allegedly indulged in a treat-filled diet of Swiss cheese, caviar, and lobster – all washed down with bottles of wine.
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His recent transformation has sparked speculation that rather than thrashing out hours in the gym with a strict eating regime, it is down to other causes.
A grave illness is one suggestion, undergoing gastric band surgery is another, 38 North reports.
According to state media, the health of their "emaciated" leader is of great concern to the North Korean public.
A gastric band typically helps shift five pounds weekly, equating to the reported 40lbs lost in two months.
The outbreak of Covid has also been probed as a catalyst for Kim's weight loss plan with his obesity making him a high risk fatality of the disease.
Chosun Media reports that after mounting pressure from pals to do something drastic, he eventually conceded and visited a secretive health retreat.
As North Korea suffers its worst famine in decades following disastrous flooding last year, it could also be a good look for Kim to show he has been affected too.
Earlier this week, Kim told war veterans the impoverished state was experiencing a "crisis similar to a war".
According to the official Rodong Sinmun daily newspaper, Kim said: "We are faced with difficulties and hardship caused by the unprecedented global health crisis and prolonged lockdown no less challenging than how it was during the war."
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- Kim Jong Un
- Weight Loss
- North Korea Dprk
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