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North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has declared K-Pop to be a “vicious cancer”

South Korean music, movies and dramas are winning the hearts of young North Koreans. Their influence is seen as a threat to Kim Jong Un’s grip on society.

The New York Times reported that Kim Jong Un recently made the remarks as part of a larger campaign against the popular South Korean music genre. 

He claimed it impacted North Koreans’ “attire, hairstyles, speeches, and behavior”. According to the New York Times, official media warned that it might cause North Korea to “crumble like a damp wall.”

South Korean pop culture has frequently been smuggled across the border over the years of separation. Many North Koreans illegally obtain South Korean dramas and music. South Korean pop culture, on the other hand, is garnering far more popularity in North Korea than it has ever been before, thanks to its rising global influence.

“Young North Koreans think they owe nothing to Kim Jong Un,” Times quoted Jung Gwang-il, a defector who runs a network that smuggles K-pop into North Korea, as saying. Therefore, the younger generation seems to be much more influenced by the globalization of K-pop.

“If this is left unchecked, he fears that his people might start considering the South an alternative Korea to replace the North”. – said Jiro Ishimaru, Chief Editor of Asia Press International. “To Kim Jong Un, the cultural invasion from South Korea has gone beyond a tolerable level.”

As more North Koreans are exposed to South Korean culture, the language in North Korea is changing even more. According to the article, some North Korean ladies prefer to refer to their partner as “Oppa” rather than “comrade“. Kim Jong Un has described such language as “perverted.”

As a result, Kim created new laws in December. Accordingly, anyone caught possessing or engaging in South Korean content could be sentenced to five years of hard labor at a work camp. K-pop smugglers themselves could face execution. And those even caught writing, singing, or speaking in a “South Korean style” could face up to two years of internment at a work camp.

Source: The New York Times

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