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  • Kim Jong Un's recent disappearance from public view has sparked talk of succession in North Korea.


  • Any change to the leadership in Pyongyang threatens a struggle for control of one of the world's most dangerous stockpiles of nuclear and chemical weapons.


  • Despite state media showing the North Korean Supreme Leader reemerge at the opening of a fertiliser factory, questions over his health have lingered, and intelligence agencies from Seoul to Washington are left facing one key question - who is next in line to replace Kim Jong Un?


  • When Kim Jong Un was handed power after the death of his father, Kim Jong, Il in 2011, experts braced themselves for regime collapse.

    2011 年に父・金正日総書記の死後、金正恩氏が政権を握ったとき、専門家は政権崩壊を覚悟しました。

  • The young leader, who had spent part of his youth in Europe, only emerged as the anointed successor barely two years earlier, and few thought he had the authority to hold the Kim dynasty together.

    青春時代の一部をヨーロッパで過ごした若き指導者は、わずか 2 年前に後継者として登場したばかりで、彼が金王朝をまとめる力を持っているとは誰も思っていなかったんです。

  • However, the now 36-year-old dictator defied expectations by removing threats to his power, including the brutal killings of his uncle and half brother.

    しかし、現在 36 歳の独裁者は、叔父と異母兄の残忍な殺害を含む権力への脅威を取り除くことで、予想に反していました。

  • With few close family members left and his own children believed to be far too young, the next in line could be Kim Yo Jong, the Supreme Leader's younger sister.


  • Kim Yo Jong gained international prominence in 2018 when she was dispatched to attend the Winter Olympics in South Korea and became the first member of the Kim regime to visit the country since the Korean War.

    2018 年に韓国で開催された冬季五輪に派遣され、朝鮮戦争後初の訪韓となったキム・ヨジョン氏が国際的に脚光を浴びるようになりました。

  • She is believed to have important roles in political departments in Pyongyang and is seen to be a top advisor to her brother, including during his flurries of brinkmanship and diplomacy with Donald Trump.


  • Based on the regime's priorities and the regime's propaganda and what Kim Jong Un himself has done in the past few years, is that his sister is very close to him.


  • Kim Yo Jong, who is in her early 30s, is always by her brother's side, is obviously a trusted confidant.

    30 代前半のキム・ヨジョンは、いつも兄の側にいるということで、明らかに信頼できる親友です。

  • She would be near the top, if not at the top of that list, of my list of who might succeed.


  • I think we have to understand that this is all at Kim's whim.


  • He has been purging, demoting, shuffling leaders left and right, hundreds of officials since he came to power.


  • And that's a way of keeping everybody on their toes.


  • And so if you're in that kind of environment, then you're going to want to make sure that you're in the leader's good graces.


  • US officials see Kim Yo Jong as one of the key regime insiders, with one analyst telling me she has been groomed for power and the propaganda game since she was a teenager.

    米国当局者はキム・ヨジョン氏を重要な政権内部者の一人と見ており、あるアナリストによると、彼女は 10 代の頃から権力とプロパガンダゲームのために練り上げられてきたと言います。

  • Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who has travelled to Pyongyang and met Chairman Kim himself several times, including when he was CIA chief, made a point of saying that he had also met Chairman Kim's sister on past trips, as well as some of the other leaders, as well.

    CIA 長官時代を含めて何度か会っているマイク・ポンペオ国務長官は、過去で平壌を訪れた際、金委員長、そして金委員長の妹や他の指導者にも会ったことがあると明言しました。

  • One person I spoke to who is directly in touch with North Korean and Chinese officials told me that, even if Kim's sister were to take over as figurehead, the party would try to project leadership in a style akin to that of China before Xi Jinping took the reins, portraying something more akin to collective leadership.


  • Analysts I spoke to said the Trump administration has also taken its eye off the ball, as the prospect for talks with North Korea that might actually yield fruit have dwindled, and the team they assembled to try and deliver denuclearisation has scattered in different directions.


  • Managing a transition with such high stakes at a time the US is fighting coronavirus, if that were to be the case, would be extremely demanding.


  • The speculation over Kim's health and whereabouts has also highlighted just how little insight we have into the North Korean leadership.


  • There are multiple Ints, which is human intelligence, signals intelligence, Geoint, and that's the satellite imagery, what we see from above, as well as open source, Osint, and also Rumint, which is rumour intelligence, right?

    人間の知能、信号の知能である Ints が複数存在します。これは衛星画像で上から見たものですが、オープンソースの Osint や Rumint 、噂の情報ですね?

  • But something like Kim's health or his whereabouts or his status, that's tricky.


  • The search for Kim Jong Un appears to have come to an end for now, but the episode has served as a stark reminder of the potential for a sudden dramatic change in the leadership in Pyongyang and the dangers of having an unstable nuclear-armed pariah state that shares borders with China and South Korea and has a history of threatening the United States.


Kim Jong Un's recent disappearance from public view has sparked talk of succession in North Korea.


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