North Korea releases pictures showing Kim Jong Un's first public appearance in weeks

North Korea has released images of Kim Jong Un making his first public appearance in more than three weeks -- seemingly quashing speculation that he was gravely ill or even dead.

In videos and photos released by the Korean Central News Agency, official state media of the hermit kingdom, Kim was shown attending a ceremony opening a fertilizer factory near Pyongyang.

He was pictured alongside senior officials, as well as his sister Kim Yo Jong, who experts have identified as Kim's likely successor if he was to become incapacitated. The pictures were accompanied by a typically fawning report from KCNA, which claimed workers at the factory broke into “thunderous cheers” for Kim.

KIM JONG UN MAKES FIRST PUBLIC APPEARANCE IN 20 DAYS, STATE MEDIA REPORTS

In this Friday, May 1, 2020, photo provided by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center, cuts a tape, watched by his sister Kim Yo Jong, during his visit to a fertilizer factory in Sunchon, South Pyongan province, near Pyongyang, North Korea. 

In this Friday, May 1, 2020, photo provided by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center, cuts a tape, watched by his sister Kim Yo Jong, during his visit to a fertilizer factory in Sunchon, South Pyongan province, near Pyongyang, North Korea.  ((Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP)

In the video, a smiling Kim wore a black Mao suit and cut a huge red ribbon with a ceremonial pair of scissors.

There were no signs he was in discomfort and was pictured without a walking stick, like the one he was seen using in 2014. He was shown, however, riding a green electric cart.

In this Friday, May 1, 2020, photo provided by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center, claps with his sister Kim Yo Jong, third from left, during a ceremony at a fertilizer factory in Sunchon, South Pyongan province, near Pyongyang, North Korea. 

In this Friday, May 1, 2020, photo provided by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center, claps with his sister Kim Yo Jong, third from left, during a ceremony at a fertilizer factory in Sunchon, South Pyongan province, near Pyongyang, North Korea.  (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP)

Speculation has been swirling about Kim’s health since he missed the April 15 birthday celebration for Kim Il Sung, his grandfather and the founder of North Korea.

The Daily NK, a Seoul-based publication that bases most of its reports on testimony from North Korean defectors and other sources inside the country, reported the secretive leader was recovering from surgery at a coastal luxury resort. It reported Friday that “had something wrong healthwise due to either excessive drinking or overwork.”

KIM JONG UN MAY BE AT NORTH KOREA RESORT COMPOUND AFTER SATELLITE IMAGES SPOT LUXURY BOATS

South Korea’s Unification Ministry confirmed the visit to the fertilizer factory. The government has repeatedly sought to downplay rumors regarding Kim’s health.

In this Friday, May 1, 2020, photo provided by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center, visits a fertilizer factory in Sunchon, South Pyongan province, near Pyongyang, North Korea. 

In this Friday, May 1, 2020, photo provided by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center, visits a fertilizer factory in Sunchon, South Pyongan province, near Pyongyang, North Korea.  (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP)

This isn’t the first time Kim, 36, has vanished from public life. In 2014, he vanished for nearly six weeks, an absence South Korea’s spy agency attributed to receiving surgery for a cyst on his ankle.

His health apparently has become an increasing problem in recent years. He is overweight, smokes and drinks, and has a family history of heart issues.

When asked about the report of Kim's sighting Friday, President Trump told reporters at the White House, “I don’t want to talk about it."

In this Friday, May 1, 2020, photo provided by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center, visits a fertilizer factory in Sunchon, South Pyongan province, near Pyongyang, North Korea. 

In this Friday, May 1, 2020, photo provided by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center, visits a fertilizer factory in Sunchon, South Pyongan province, near Pyongyang, North Korea.  (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP)

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Trump hinted earlier this week that he knew the status of Kim's health.

Fox News' Louis Casiano and the Associated Press contributed to this article.