Ri Sol Ju, Kim Jong Un's wife and first lady of North Korea.
Days before his historic meeting with President Trump, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un took his wife Ri Sol-ju to a new seafood restaurant in Pyongyang. History has long kept the wives of Kim’s father and grandfather in the shadows, so Ri’s frequent appearance at Kim’s side is breaking the North Korean norm.
Ri, who was recently dubbed North Korea’s first lady by state media, has made “regular appearances at her husband’s side in recent months as relations have warmed between North and South Korea,” CNN reports.
When Ri was first spotted at Kim’s side, media speculated that she may have been one of Kim’s sisters or relatives, who frequently shy away from the spotlight. Dubbed Kim’s “mystery woman,” state media did not announce Kim and Ri’s marriage until July 2012, nearly three years after South Korean intelligence agencies believes the wedding actually took place.
Little is known about Ri, although she has been taking on the role of a more Western first lady over the last few years, making public appearances by Kim’s side more often since 2011, according to CNN.
Ri is believed to be in her late 20’s or early 30’s, and although there is little known about her early life or family, experts speculate that Ri was born around 1984 in Chongjin, North Korea’s third largest city, CNN reports. She graduated from Kim Il Sung University, and is the granddaughter or grandniece of Ri Pyong Chol, the former head of the Korean People’s Army Air and Anti-Air Forces, according to CNN.
Kim and Ri have three children together, according to South Korea’s National Intelligence Service (NIS). However, only one of their children has been publicly named; NBA star Dennis Rodman, who visited Pyongyang in 2013, said he held Kim’s daughter Ju Ae, USA Today reports.
Here is a look at the “Supreme” Leader’s wife Ri:
PANMUNJOM, SOUTH KOREA – APRIL 27: North Korean first lady Ri Sol-ju (L) and Leader Kim Jong Un (R) upon Ri’s arrival at the Peace House on April 27, 2018 in Panmunjom, South Korea. Kim and Moon meet at the border today for the third-ever inter-Korean summit talks after the 1945 division of the peninsula, and first since 2007 between then President Roh Moo-hyun of South Korea and Leader Kim Jong-il of North Korea. (Photo by Korea Summit Press Pool/Getty Images)
North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un (2nd L) and his wife Ri Sol Ju (L) toast with South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in (2nd R) and his wife Kim Jung-sook (R) during the official dinner at the end of their historic summit at the truce village of Panmunjom on April 27, 2018. (Photo credit should read KOREA SUMMIT PRESS POOL/AFP/Getty Images)
Ri Sol Ju (L), wife of North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un, is greeted by Kim Jung-sook (R), wife of South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in, walk together before the official dinner at the end of their historic summit at the truce village of Panmunjom on April 27, 2018. (Photo credit should read KOREA SUMMIT PRESS POOL/AFP/Getty Images)
This picture released by North Korean news agency, KCNA (Korean Central News Agency) on January 1, 2017 shows North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un (front C) and his wife Ri Sol-Ju (front 4th L) visiting Kumsusan Palace of the Sun in Pyongyang on the New Year’s Day. (Photo credit should read STRINGER/AFP/Getty Images)
This picture taken by North Korean news agency KCNA (Korean Central News Agency) on March 2, 2017 and released on March 3 shows North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un (C) and his wife Ri Sol-Ju (2nd R) visiting the Mangyongdae Revolutionary School in Pyongyang to plant trees with its students on a tree planting day. (Photo credit should read STR/AFP/Getty Images)
This undated picture released by North Korea’s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on September 10, 2017 shows North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un (centre row 2nd L) and his wife Ri Sol-Ju (centre row L) attending an art performance dedicated to nuclear scientists and technicians, who worked on a hydrogen bomb which the regime claimed to have successfully tested, at the People’s Theatre in Pyongyang. (Photo credit should read STR/AFP/Getty Images)