In the middle of February 2002, General Choi was operated on his stomach by the doctors of worldwide fame at a special hospital of Pyongyang. It is said that General Choi was diagnosed with stomach cancer at a hospital of Toronto. On 10 February 2002, General Choi left Toronto toward Beijing, China. After General Choi stayed overnight at Beijing, on 12 February he went to Pyongyang, North Korea.
In fact, during the Vienna Congress General Choi complained of aches and pains. It is said that he could not eat well because of the pain from his stomach. After the Congress General Choi came back to Toronto, but his health did not improve. In Canada General Choi went to the doctors a few times, the hospitals were very crowded. He could not take quick and appropriate treatments. It was hard to take great nurses and treatments 24 hours a day.