(Reference Photo) A middle school student in Hyesan City. Her red coat looks to be influenced by Chinese and South Korean fashion trends. Photographed in October, 2013 by ASIAPRESS

◆ Kim Jong-un regime aims to block South Korean culture

In the northern city of Hyesan in Ryanggang Province, 16 people, including 10 secondary school students, were dragged before a crowd of 500 mobilized students to be publicly condemned.

According to a reporting partner living in Hyesan City, speaking with ASIAPRESS on July 6, the “public denouncement rally” was held on July 2 in the downtown plaza facing the Hyesan Theater.

After speaking with a contact who was mobilized for the event, the reporting partner told ASIAPRESS, “About 500 middle school students and local residents were mobilized. 7 men and 9 women were dragged before the crowd- about 10 of them were secondary school students. They were condemned for either watching, copying, lending, or selling American and South Korean dramas and movies. A police official read out their charges, explaining it that they have arrested a suspect followed by one by one.”

At the “public denouncement rally”, officials labeled South Korean dramas as “false propaganda” that spread illusions of decadent, rotten capitalism, acting as poison in a sound socialist system.

The reporting partner continued, “The officials say that people who watch the dramas believe that they are seeing is true. And that, therefore, we must establish a full-scale reporting system for preventing this phenomenon from extending its roots in our society. They stressed that parents must also educate their children properly so that they do not go down this bad path.”

The 16 accused are said to be currently under further investigation and will be punished according to the severity of their crimes.

“If the parents of the accused are party members, they will be expelled from the party and from their workplaces as well,” said the reporting partner.

There was a major incident earlier this year, in March, when it was discovered that young North Koreans in Musan County were secretly watching and distributing the hit South Korean film, “A Taxi Driver”. Since then, the Kim Jong-un regime has pushed for inter-Korean dialogue while maintaining a strict attitude towards the penetration and spread of South Korean culture. (Kang Ji-won)

Editor’s notes on North Korean reporters

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