It has been confirmed that North Korea worked with Texas Medical Center in Houston on treatment for Kim Jong Il following his stroke in August, 2008, according to a report carried by Donga Ilbo this morning.
Lee Byeong Hun of the Korean Medical Association, who reportedly confirmed the facts with the medical center, explained to the newspaper, “When Chairman Kim Jong Il collapsed with a stroke in 2008, the North Korean ambassador to the UN in New York called the head of this hospital to request a meeting, which the hospital accepted.”
In the meeting, the North Korean ambassador apparently requested that three North Korean experts in diabetes, heart conditions and strokes be allowed to receive three months of education from the medical center as exchange professors.
Thereafter, according to Lee, the two sides reached further agreement on training, and a further ten or more doctors were trained by the medical center, which is among the largest in the world. The North also requested that a report on the best ways to treat heart disease be sent to Pyongyang by the center just one month prior to Kim’s death, by which time signs of heart failure had begun to appear in the ailing leader.