French doctor now confirms Kim had stroke in 2008

PARIS (AP) — A French neurosurgeon who says his medical treatment brought Kim Jong Il out of a coma following a debilitating 2008 stroke has suggested the secretive North Korean leader was living on borrowed time.

Dr. Francois-Xavier Roux said he was flown urgently to North Korea in August 2008 to examine Kim, who was unconscious and "in a bad way" while in intensive care at Pyongyang's Red Cross Hospital. Roux said the stroke increased Kim's chances of death in subsequent years.

The trip and medical exam gave nearly unparalleled access for a Westerner into North Korea's secretive regime. Roux is chief of neurosurgery at Sainte Anne Hospital in Paris.

Roux spoke to The Associated Press on Monday after North Korean state media announced Kim's death at 69 following a heart attack two days earlier.

Associated Press
Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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