Kim Jong Il's sons long drawn to Tokyo Disneyland

December 23, 2011

By YOSHIHIRO MAKINO/ Correspondent

SEOUL--From the Hermit Kingdom to the Magic Kingdom, North Korea's “royalty” appear to be big fans of Mickey Mouse and the gang.

A young boy believed to be Kim Jong Un, the third son of late North Korean leader Kim Jong Il and now the country's new leader, entered Japan around 1991 with his older brother, Kim Jong Chol, according to sources familiar with Japan-South Korea relations.

They visited Tokyo Disneyland in Urayasu, Chiba Prefecture, other sources said.

The brothers, who were in elementary school at the time, entered Japan using passports from a Latin American country.

Japanese immigration officials failed to confirm their identities at the time because no sources or material were available to verify who they were, the sources said.

Family members of Kim Jong Il are called "the Royal Family." They can take trips to foreign countries on fake passports from nations such as the Dominican Republic.

Ko Yong Hui, the mother of the two sons, also visited Japan in the late 1990s. She stayed at the upscale Hotel Okura in Tokyo and did some shopping.

Kim Jong Nam, the oldest son of Kim Jong Il, also frequently entered Japan in the 1990s. It has been confirmed that he once wined and dined at a restaurant in Tokyo's Akasaka district. He was also stopped at Narita Airport with a fake passport in 2001 and deported. He reportedly wanted to go to Tokyo Disneyland.

By YOSHIHIRO MAKINO/ Correspondent
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Tokyo Disneyland (Asahi Shimbun file photo)

Tokyo Disneyland (Asahi Shimbun file photo)

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  • Tokyo Disneyland (Asahi Shimbun file photo)

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