North Korean leader`s sister may attend Seoul event: Organiser
North Korea has offered to send leader Kim Jong-Un`s increasingly influential sister to a private cultural festival in Seoul next year, the South Korean organiser of the event said Thursday.
Seoul: North Korea has offered to send leader Kim Jong-Un`s increasingly influential sister to a private cultural festival in Seoul next year, the South Korean organiser of the event said Thursday.
If Kim Yo-Jong were to make the trip, it would be the first visit to the South by an immediate member of the North`s ruling family.
However, a senior official in the South`s Unification Ministry said it was unconvinced the proposal was genuine.
Kim`s name was on the list of authorised attendees North Korea provided ahead of a joint food and culture festival to be held in the South Korean capital in March, businessman Dongbang Youngman told AFP.
"It`s been confirmed that the Kim Yo-Jong named on the list refers to the leader`s sister", Dongbang said, adding that he had submitted the list to the Unification Ministry along with a formal letter of intent from the North Korean side to participate in the event.
Any civilian trip from either side of the border requires the ministry`s approval.
A senior ministry official said Dongbang had been asked to provide more documentation to support the North`s participation in the festival.
"The format of the documents provided so far is unusual," the official said.
"We are rather sceptical about the authenticity of these documents and we need more concrete evidence before we decide whether to proceed with this project," he added.
Kim Yo-Jong, believed to be 26, has been in the news recently after North Korea revealed for the first time that she holds the title of a senior party official.
North Korean watchers have speculated that Kim, who has regularly accompanied her brother on his "field guidance" trips, is being groomed to play the same leadership supporting role as her powerful aunt, Kim Kyong-Hui.
Kim Kyong-Hui, 68, was a close aide to her own brother and late leader Kim Jong-Il for decades, assuming senior positions in the party and becoming a four-star general in 2010.
Kim Kyong-Hui`s late husband Jang Song-Thaek, who was purged and executed a year ago, had visited the South in 2002, but no direct Kim family member has done so.