WhatsApp Channel Join Now
Telegram Group Join Now

North Korean Teens Jailed 12 Years for Watching K-Dramas

North Korea

Two North Korean minors were sentenced to 12 years of hard labor (reform through labor) by a judge for watching a Korean drama. The video leaked from North Korea shocked the international community, with the news widely reported by international media on Friday.

According to reports from the BBC, the video was released by “an organization working with North Korean defectors.” The filming time may have been 2022, because the people in the picture are wearing masks; it should have been during the new coronavirus pandemic.

Credit: BBC News

Footage showed two 16-year-old boys being put on trial on a stadium stage in handcuffs. There were hundreds of students watching in the audience.

The subtitles of the video said that the two Pyongyang teenagers were charged with watching TV dramas and music videos released by a South Korean institute called “North-South Development.”. The institute’s CEO, Choi Kyong-hui, is also a North Korean defector who fled North Korea in 2001. Choi Kyung-hee received a doctorate in political science from the University of Tokyo, Japan.

The uniformed North Korean official pictured in the video said the two boys had not “profoundly realized their mistake.”

North Korea enacted a law in 2020 targeting “reactionary ideas.” The law provides for heavy prison sentences for those who watch Korean entertainment programs and imitate Korean speech.

Reuters quoted Choi Kyung-hee as saying, “Judging from the severity of the sentence, this seems to be a warning to everyone in North Korea. It seems that this kind of lifestyle in South Korean culture should be very popular in North Korean society.”

MUST READ: ☞  U.S. and Ukraine discuss giving it more powerful rocket launch systems

“The trouble for Kim Jong Un is the millennials and Gen Z young people; their way of thinking has changed. I think he (Kim Jong Un) is trying to bring it back to the North Korean way,” Cui Jingji said.

Choi Kyung-hui said that Korean dramas and pop music are seen as an ideological threat in N. Korea, and this yearning is believed to weaken N. Korea’s existing system and deviate from the Kim family’s single ideology.

The BBC quoted a N. Korean defector as saying, “If you are caught secretly watching American dramas, you can avoid punishment through bribery, but if you secretly watch Korean dramas, you will be shot.”

The video commentator said, “They (the two boys) were seduced by foreign culture, which ultimately ruined their lives.” The video cuts to a handcuffed female student and a Pyongyang woman wearing Korean clothing and a Korean hairstyle.

The BBC said that in the past, N. Korean children who violated such laws were usually sent to youth labor camps instead of being sentenced to long-term imprisonment, with punishment periods generally not exceeding five years.

Relations between poor, authoritarian North Korea and rich, democratic South Korea are tense. Kim Jong-un recently announced that he would abandon peaceful reunification as his main policy goal, called for amending the constitution, and regarded South Korea as his main enemy.

In the 1950s, the North and the South fought a three-year war on the Korean peninsula. A United Nations force dominated by the US military helped South Korea, while a “volunteer army” composed of millions of CCP troops formed by China entered North Korea to help the Kim Il Sung. regime. The two sides signed an armistice agreement in 1953. Technically, North and South Korea are not currently at war.

MUST READ: ☞  Taiwan's Presidential Election: Party "Lai Xiaopei" wins with 5.58 million votes

Exciting news! Meritnews24 is now on WhatsApp Channels  Subscribe today by clicking the link and stay updated with the latest insights!”Click here!

Leave a Comment

WhatsApp Channel Join Now
Telegram Group Join Now