North Korea bans celebration, drinking and shopping

North Korea also known as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, has reportedly prohibited its citizens from celebrating and shopping or drinking for eleven days starting from Friday, as a part of the mourning period for the 10th anniversary of former leader Kim Jong-il. 

 Kim Jong-il who ruled North Korea from 1994 to 2011, died of a heart attack at the age of sixty-nice on 17th December 2011 and was succeeded by his son, Kim Jong-un. According to reports of Radio Free Asia, all forms of leisure have been banned for 11 days. Citizens have been warned of consequences such as arrest in the likelihood that they fail to comply with the restrictions. 

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Radio Free Asia quoted that even if a family member passes away during the state-designated mourning period, the family members are not allowed to cry out loud or perform the last rites for the deceased. “People cannot even celebrate their own birthdays if they fall in the mourning period”, added the non-profit news service. 

Since his death in 2011, Kim Jong-un pays respects at his father’s memorial. Kim reportedly paid respects at a mausoleum where the embalmed body lies as well as convening national meetings to honour the former ruler. According to reports, while the mourning period is usually ten days, this time it has been extended by a day in honour of the 10th anniversary. 

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Additionally, the state-run media service has published articles calling for “greater unity”, and regarding Kim Jong-il while airing propaganda songs and documentaries on the late leader.

Rodong Sinmun newspaper revered the former leader in an editorial saying, “Great leader and comrade Kim Jong Il is always with us … and he is the eternal suryong’ and sun of juche (self-reliance)’ of our party and revolution”. The North Korean newspaper added “We should make our every effort to bolster our single-minded unity”.  

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Meanwhile, citizens have paid homage before the bronze statues of Kim Jong-il and Kim Il Sung at Pyongyang’s Mansu Hill.

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