North Korea has banned the citizens of the country from laughing, drinking and shopping for 11 days with effect from Friday as part of the countrywide mourning on the 10th anniversary of former leader and Kim Jong Un’s father, Kim Jong-il.
A media report quoted a North Korean from the northeastern border city of Sinuiju as saying that during the 11-day mourning period, the citizens have been asked not to drink alcohol, laugh or engage in leisure activities.
On condition of anonymity, sources said if anyone’s family dies during the mourning period, they will not be allowed to cry out loud and the body must be taken out after the mourning period is over.
The report quoted the North Korean as telling Radio Free Asia that the people cannot even celebrate their own birthdays if they fall within the period of mourning.
Sources said earlier, many people were caught drinking or being intoxicated during the mourning period and they were arrested.
“They were treated as ideological criminals. They were taken away and never seen again,” the report quoted sources as saying.
The second of the Kim family dynasty, Kim Jong-il ruled North Korea for 17 years until his death on December 17, 2011.
According to another report, the death of Kim Jong-il was not reported until 2 days later by the state media.