The video said Kim, who has at times vanished from public view and lost a significant amount of weight, was “completely withered away,” according to independent news and analysis website North Korea News. The TV special included footage of Kim “struggling to walk down a set of stairs,” and reporter Colin Zwirko shared a clip showing the dictator with a noticeable limp:
The scene showing KJU suffering and the narrator speaking half openly and half vaguely about his health issues is reminiscent of a 2014 documentary showing him walking with a limp and mention of him “not feeling well” around a 40-day break from public view, his longest ever pic.twitter.com/JuCAddQkhJ
— Colin Zwirko (@ColinZwirko) February 1, 2022
Both NK News and Voice of America noted that the documentary did not admit to any health problems but said his issues were due to how hard he was working.
No mention of dieting, exercise or illness as causes of Kim Jong Un’s dramatic weight loss last year, but instead, hard work and apparently stress, described as “worrying to realize the dreams of his people.” https://t.co/OjgJwI3TUo
— Anthony Kuhn (@akuhnNPRnews) February 1, 2022
The new film was released amid escalating tensions in the region after North Korea conducted a series of provocative missile launches, including a launch on Sunday believed to have been the pariah nation’s most powerful missile tested in five years.
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.