October 25, 2021

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Kim Jong Un: Pompeo says initial reports show gunfire from North Korea ‘unintentional’

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 18: U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks during a press conference at the U.S. Department of State on November 18, 2019 in Washington, DC.  Pompeo announced that the Trump administration does not consider Israeli settlements in the West Bank a violation of international law. Pompeo also spoke about protests in Iran, Iraq and Hong Kong. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

“I have also seen that report. I have also seen some of our internal information. We can confirm at least the initial report that you have described is almost correct. A number of shots coming from the North.” We think it was a coincidence. South Korea did return fire as far as we know there were no casualties on either side, “Pompeo said Sunday on ABC,” This Week. “

The report came a day after President Donald Trump appeared to confirm that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un was “alive and well,” and retweeted photos of North Korean state media Kim who attended the ribbon-cutting ceremony at Sunchon Phosphate Fertilizer Factory.

A US official told CNN on Saturday that the current analysis of various intelligence lines was that photographs published by North Korean state media showed Kim at a fertilizer factory opening was legal. CNN cannot independently verify the authenticity of photos or videos or the date they were taken.

Questions about Kim’s health initially arose after he missed his grandfather’s birthday celebration on April 15. He had been seen four days earlier at a politburo meeting, according to North Korean state media, KCNA.

CNN had previously reported that the United States was monitoring intelligence that Kim was “in grave danger after the operation,” according to a US official. Another US official told CNN Monday that concerns about Kim’s health could be trusted, but their severity was difficult to assess.

On Sunday, Pompeo was silent about Kim’s health.

“We don’t know why he chose to miss that moment. We know there is another long period of time where Chairman Kim is also not seen in public, so it has never happened before. So there’s not much I can share with you other than we have “saw the same picture from yesterday that the world saw. Looks like Chairman Kim is still alive and well,” Pompeo said.

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“Apart from all that, our mission is, to remain the same – to convince North Koreans to surrender their nuclear weapons, to verify the same and then create a brighter future for the people of North Korea.”

Asked if he was seriously ill during a period in which Kim was not seen in public, Pompeo would only say that “I cannot say anything about it.” He also declined to say whether the US has information about whether Kim’s situation is connected to Covid-19 or heart problems.

Jeremy Diamond and Jason Hoffman from CNN contributed to this report.