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Commemorating the death of Kim Jong II, North Koreans are prohibited from laughing for 11 days

Credit: Pixabay via The Diplomat
The North Korean government ordered the public not to show an atmosphere of happiness. As long as the country is commemorating the death of Kim Jong Il.

Kim Jong Il ruled North Korea from 1994. Until his death in 2011. He was succeeded by his third and youngest son, Kim Jong Un. In commemoration of the 10th anniversary of Kim Jong Il's death, North Koreans are required to observe an 11-day period of mourning. They are not allowed to laugh, drink alcohol, even recreation.

During the mourning period, North Korean citizens may not drink alcohol, laugh or engage in recreational activities. This was conveyed by a North Korean resident from the northeastern border city of Sinuiju to Radio Free Asia (RFA).

The source also added that North Koreans are not allowed to shop for groceries on December 17. Right on the anniversary of Kim Jong Il's death.

According to a source, in the past many people were caught drinking or drinking during mourning. They were arrested and treated as criminals against the state. They were taken away and never to be seen again.

“Even if a member of your family dies during the mourning period, you are not allowed to cry loudly and the body must be taken out after it is done. People can't even celebrate their own birthdays if they fall into mourning," he said.

Kim Jong Il died of a heart attack on December 17, 2011. Right at the age of 69 years. After ruling the country for 17 years. The annual mourning period for Kim Jong Il is usually 10 days. But this year is a little special. It became 11 days as it marked the tenth anniversary of his death.

Another source, a resident of the southwestern province of South Hwanghae, said police officers were told to keep an eye on people who didn't look sad during the mourning period. From the first day of December, the police will have a special duty to crack down on those who spoil the mourning atmosphere .

''This is a special task for the police for a month. I heard that law enforcement officers are not allowed to sleep at all,” said the source.

The source also added that citizen groups and state-owned companies have been ordered to care for the poor during the mourning period. Because the country is grappling with a food crisis.

"Order and social security must be ensured, so that companies are responsible for collecting food to give to residents and employees who are unable to come to work due to food shortages," they said.

The unnamed resident added that mourning for Kim Jong Il, and his father Kim Il Sung, affects North Korea's daily life. They hope that the moment of mourning is carried out properly and shortened.

Three generations of the Kim family have ruled North Korea since Kim Il Sung founded the country in 1948. When Kim Il Sung died in 1994, his eldest son, Kim Jong Il, inherited power. Kim Jong Un is the third and youngest son of Kim Jong Il. He took power after his father's death in 2011.

To commemorate the tenth anniversary of Kim Jong Il's death, various provinces in North Korea hold photography exhibitions and hold concerts in his memory. A resident from Puryong Regency said that lectures and performances had already started at his residence.

Meanwhile, North Korea is currently under a series of international sanctions over its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs. The country has long suffered from food shortages. The country is facing its worst economic crisis in years, hit by sanctions and a self-imposed blockade.

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