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Russian TV adds a smile to Kim Jong-un's face

Meduza

The weekly news show “Vesti Nedeli” on the TV network Rossiya 1 has aired some pretty wild stuff over the years. The host, outspoken pro-Kremlin pundit Dmitry Kiselyov, once famously bragged about Russia’s unique ability to turn the United States into “radioactive ash.” Two years later, Kiselyov “accidentally” compared Barack Obama to a “jungle monkey.” But not all of the show’s insanity flies out the mouth of its host, and the digital wizards who queue up the visuals that appear over Kiselyov’s shoulder during each episode reminded viewers last Sunday that they’re every bit as ready to play fast and loose with your grasp of reality.

On June 3, the show’s digital wizards apparently edited a photograph of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, to show him smiling when shaking hands with visiting Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, who traveled to Pyongyang on May 31. In the original photograph, Lavrov flashes his trademark smile, while Kim frowns seriously. It’s unclear why the show apparently decided to edit this photograph, given that there were other moments during the Kim-Lavrov meeting when the North Korean leader did (almost) smile.

Dmitry Kisleyov, meanwhile, denies that his team altered the image in question. He claims that photographers took so many pictures that some photos from roughly the same moment captured different facial expressions. Look at the pics and judge for yourself.

Rossiya 1
Valery Sharifulin / TASS / Scanpix / LETA

On May 31, Vladimir Putin has invited Kim Jong-un, the leader of North Korea, to attend an economic forum in Vladivostok in September. Sources told the news agency RIA Novosti that Putin and Kim could meet “on the sidelines” during the forum.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on June 4 that Kim hasn’t yet responded to Putin’s invitation. On June 12, Kim is expected to travel to Singapore for a much anticipated meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump.