London, June 20 (ANI): The health of 'Dear Leader' Kim Jong-Il is rapidly deteriorating, and North Korea is trying to buy high-tech medical equipment from abroad to address the issue, according to latest reports.
South Korea's largest selling newspaper, the Chosun Ilbo, reports that North is seeking to bring in an emergency helicopter and other expensive medical equipment through China. uoting a North Korean official in Beijing, the paper reports that Kim's health is worsening and that the 67-year-old is being treated in a Pyongyang hospital.
Kim, 67, is believed to have suffered a stroke last year that removed him from the public eye during several key national events, The Times reported.
The medical machinery needed is among a number of items banned under the trade embargo on North Korea, which followed the regime's first nuclear test in 2006. Previous speculation over Kim's illness focused on possible visits to Pyongyang by specialists from Europe.
Japanese newspapers have carried stories suggesting that two of Kim's sons have travelled to Beijing to meet President Hu Jintao and declare themselves heirs to the regime. A Foreign Ministry spokesman in Beijing dismissed the claims. (ANI)