In a recent event, North Korean Chairman Kim Jong-un’s visit to a construction site in Pyongyang revealed some fascinating intricacies of North Korean power dynamics. Amongst the entourage accompanying Kim was Hyon Song-wol, vice director of the Workers’ Party’s Propaganda and Agitation Department, whose actions stood out remarkably from the rest of the officials.

Hyon Song-wol /KCTV

During Kim’s visit to the soon-to-be-completed construction site of the 10,000-unit apartment complex in Pyongyang’s Hwasong District, the Chairman was observed pointing out various aspects of the project. His accompanying officials were seen diligently noting his instructions. However, Hyon Song-wol was spotted at a distance, engrossed in her mobile phone.

Hyon Song-wol /X

Experts analyzed that Hyon, being one of Kim’s closest confidants, could be receiving reports or urgent messages intended for the Chairman. In fact, she holds the power to control all aspects of Kim’s events, much like Kim’s sister, Kim Yo-jong, another influential figure in North Korea’s power structure.

Kim Jong-un /KCTV

Hyon, familiar to South Koreans for leading the North Korean art troupe during the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics, has seen a meteoric rise since Kim’s rule began. Starting as a popular singer, she went on to become the director of the Moranbong Band, a candidate member of the party’s central committee, and now manages all of Kim Jong-un’s events.

Rumors about Hyon’s deep connection with Kim Jong-un have been afloat for years, with speculations that she even bore an illegitimate child for him. Allegedly named Kim Il-bong, this child has been a subject of much discussion among North Korean watchers.

In a peculiar incident in September 2022, during North Korea’s 74th founding anniversary celebrations, a girl performing at the event was initially reported to be Kim Jong-un’s daughter due to her different attire compared to other performers. However, sources later identified the girl as Hyon’s daughter.

This intriguing dynamic between Kim Jong-un and Hyon Song-wol continues to feed speculation about the inner workings of the secretive North Korean regime, giving the world a glimpse into the clandestine power structures of this enigmatic nation.