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Monday, March 22, 2010

Yonhap News Agency says Nails of Kim Jong-il Abnormally White…'Proof of Kidney Malfunction'

On 9 March 2010, South Korea's semiofficial news agency Yonhap carried on its website (in Korean) an article analyzing the color change of Kim Jong-il's hands and nails based on photos of him taken before and after April 2009. The article also claimed that the color change is an indication that Kim Jong-il is suffering from serious kidney malfunctions which require dialysis.

Yonhap claims that since April 2009, Kim Jong-il's nails have started to look "opaque and white," unlike the color of a healthy person's nails. To support this claim, it compared Kim Jong-il's photo (photo No 1) of his inspection of a Korean People's Army unit in August 2008 against photos (photo No 2-8) taken after April 2009.

Yonhap claims that his nails were relatively "clear and flesh-tonned" in the photos of his military inspection in August 2008 (as can be seen in photo No 1) and those taken in November 2008 after he recovered from a stroke. However, his nails looked opaque and white in the photo at the SPA rostrum in April 2009 (photo No 2). The report claims that this was also observed in his photos taken during his inspection of an Air Force unit in May 2009 (photo No 3), talks with former US President Clinton in August 2009 (photo No 4), his visit to Kim Il Sung University in December 2009 (photo No 5), and the meeting with Wang Jiarui in February 2010 (photo No 8).

Yonhap cited South Korean kidney doctors' opinions on the color change. They said that "if you develop uremia due to kidney malfunctions, your skin gets easily tanned, and you are highly likely to develop anemia." They pointed out that this appears to be why "the back of Chairman Kim's hand is unusually dark, while the nails are white." Some of them claimed that if Kim Jong-il has been given a dialysis, chances are high for Kim Jong-il to be given a peritoneal dialysis, rather than a hemodialysis, since the former gives less stress on the heart and can be carried out while patients are sleeping or on the move.

The report cited comments from aa South Korean Government official who refused to confirm the abnormality with regard to the color change of Kim's hands and nails and also the rumor of Kim's suffering from kidney malfunctions, by saying that "all we can say is that given Chairman Kim Jong-il's health status, he currently has no difficulty in ruling North Korea."

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