Fash-Un Police: Kim Jong Un’s leather coats prevent citizens from copying his looks
- Leather coats became popular in North Korea after Kim wore them for the first time in 2019
- Initially the preserve of wealthy elites who could afford to buy real leather, in recent months cheap imitations using synthetic materials have begun to appear.
- Fashion police deployed to confiscate coats amid fears they diminish the Supreme Leader’s appearance and undermine his power
- North Korea tightly controls citizens’ styles, including approved haircuts
North Korea has banned people from wearing leather coats after it allegedly became the fashion item of dictator Kim Jong Un’s favorite.
First worn by Kim in 2019, the coat became popular among North Korea’s elite who were eager to show their loyalty to the Supreme Leader and who could afford real leather.
But more recently, copycats have proliferated and fashion police have now proliferated to shut down the merchants who sell them and get them out of the public eye amid fears that it is diminishing Kim’s appearance and undermining his power.
Kim Jong-un reported that North Koreans were banned from wearing leather coats after the item became one of his favorites (pictured wearing it last week)
Sources claimed (pictured in the coat for the first time in 2019)
“[Police] A source told Radio Free Asia, using a common homage to refer to Kim, that wearing clothes designed to look like the highest dignity is an “impure tendency to defy the authority of the highest dignity.”
“They have instructed the public not to wear leather coats, as it is part of the party’s guidance to determine who can wear them.”
The outlet said the fake versions of the coat first began appearing in September this year when unofficial trade between China and North Korea reopened after a closure during the Covid pandemic.
This allowed traders to start sourcing faux leather to make their coats.
Radio Free Asia claimed to have seen an import document from recent months that showed dozens of meters of material had been imported.
Kim debuted in a leather coat in December 2019, while he was negotiating with Donald Trump over North Korea’s nuclear stockpile.
South Korean media noticed this dress-up design, suggesting that Kim signifies Kim’s desire to break tradition and form his own identity.
Until then, he had largely modeled himself after his father and grandfather – North Korea’s founder – by wearing Mao-style jackets and horn-rimmed glasses.
The leather coat has appeared several times since then – it has been adopted by his sister Kim Yo Jong and other high-ranking female politicians.
Police have begun confiscating counterfeit coats amid fears that they diminish the Supreme Leader’s appearance and could undermine his authority
Kim wore the jacket for the first time in 2019 while negotiating with Trump over North Korea’s nuclear stockpile, and it was seen as a symbol of detachment from the country’s past.
Recently, Kim was seen wearing it while visiting a newly built tourist town near the mountainous city of Samjiyon.
Nor is the ban on leather coats the first time that senior brass has imposed a choice of North Korean fashion.
In 2014, three years after Kim took the helm, sources told Radio Free Asia that male students were instructed to cut their hair to match the supreme leader’s style — which at the time was short on the back and sides with a parting. higher.
Then, in 2017, it was reported that North Koreans were forbidden to cut their hair to look like Kim and were only allowed to choose from 15 approved hairstyles.
All haircuts feature short back and sides with hair combed forward, backward or in a side parting.
The requirements reflect a campaign broadcast on state television in 2005, urging citizens to “cut our hair according to a socialist way of life.”
Shorter methods were also recommended for women “to fend off the maneuvers of enemies” to “infiltrate corrupt capitalist ideas and way of life” in North Korea.
The same campaign also urged North Korea to keep their clothes modest, and to always wear smart shoes.
A column in the state newspaper Minju Chosun published that year “No matter how good the clothes are, if one does not wear elegant shoes, one’s personality will decline.”
North Korea has been sentenced to death by firing squad after a copy of the Squid Game was smuggled into the country
A North Korean man will be executed for returning a copy of Netflix’s Squid Game to the country.
The smuggler, a student, is said to have returned from China with a digital copy of the successful South Korean series stored on a hidden USB flash drive.
But after selling copies to many people including his fellow students, he was caught by the country’s surveillance services.
The English Language Council urged parents not to allow their children to watch the popular Netflix show Squid Game because it is ‘violent’ and ‘pictorial’
It is understood that he will now be executed by firing squad – which is one of the horrific ways in which characters in the series are killed as well.
The arrests are believed to have taken place in North Hamgyong Province in the country bordering China over the past week.
Radio Free Asia reported that one student who bought a copy of the drive has since received a life sentence, while six others who watched the show have been sentenced to five years in prison with hard labour.
North Korea has a strict ban on items from the West and South Korea that are allowed into the country and officials are now conducting searches at the students’ school to find more foreign media.
Some teachers are said to have been fired or may face banishment to work in remote mines as punishment.
“It all started last week when a high school student secretly bought a USB flash drive containing the South Korean drama Squid Game and watched it with one of his best class friends,” a law enforcement source told the publication.
The source said the duo discussed the series with friends who became interested and bought copies of it.
The dystopian Squid Game world where debt-burdened people confront each other in Korean children’s games with the execution of losing players resonates clearly with North Koreans living under dictatorship.
But then the students were arrested by the state watchdog service – 109 Sangmu – who received a tip-off that they were watching a western TV show.