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Kim Jong-il death anniversary: North Korea bans shopping and laughing…

Kim Jong-il death anniversary: The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, known commonly as North Korea, commemorates the 10th death anniversary of its former leader and current leader Kim Jong-un’s father Kim Jong-il, on December 17.

The country has allegedly banned its citizens from laughing, shopping and drinking during the 11-day mourning that follows.

Kim Jong-il, the son of North Korea’s founder Kim Il-sung, was the country’s second ruler. He took over after his father’s death in 1994 and continued as its leader till his death in 2011, followed by his third son Kim Jong-un.

According to American government-funded news organisation, Radio Free Asia, all leisure activities have been banned in North Korea for the next 11 days. Anyone who breaks the rule will be arrested like every year, the report said.

“Even if your family member dies during the mourning period, you are not allowed to cry out loud and the body must be taken out after it’s over. People cannot even celebrate their own birthdays if they fall within the mourning period,” Radio Free Asia quoted a resident of North Korea who lives in the border city of Sinuiju.

Like every year, Kim Jong-un was expected to pay his respects at a mausoleum where the embalmed bodies of both Kim Jong-il and his father Kim Il-sung are preserved. However, the North Korean media did not immediately report on any public activities by Kim Jong-un on Friday morning.

On Thursday, ordinary citizens offered flowers and paid homage before giant bronze statues of Kim Jong-il and Kim Il-sung at Pyongyang’s Mansu Hill.

This year, the mourning period has been extended to 11 days as this is the 10th death anniversary. Generally, a 10-day mourning period is observed every year.

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