Kim Jong Un's absurd rule: Don't speak ‘like a South Korean’, North Koreans told | World News - Hindustan Times
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Kim Jong Un's absurd rule: Don't speak ‘like a South Korean’, North Koreans told

Jun 30, 2023 02:18 PM IST

Anyone in North Korea caught using slang or vocabulary from the South will face sentences.

North Korean intensified national crackdown on “puppet language”- Korean spoken in South Korea. Anyone in North Korea caught using slang or vocabulary from the South will face sentences that may include hard labour in a prison camp or even death under the Pyongyang Cultural Language Protection Act, South China Morning Post reported.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. (AP)
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. (AP)

“Residents who are already accustomed to the South Korean way of speaking now feel like they have to practice the Pyongyang dialect,” a resident in the northwestern province of North Pyongan told Radio Free Asia.

“They are worried that South Korean words will unintentionally or unknowingly come out of their mouths and that they will be punished,” he said.

Read more: Google to block local news in Canada over media law

What words North Koreans cannot use?

North Korean women cannot call their husbands or boyfriends “jagiya” or “oppa”. Instead, they must stick with “dongji,” (comrade), the report claimed. North Koreans also have to avoid using South Korean loan words from English such as ‘paesyeon’ (fashion), ‘heeoseutail’ (hairstyle) and ‘waipeu’ (wife).

“Even openly saying ‘I love you’ is evidence that they have seen South Korean movies and such language has become normalized,” the report added. North Korean authorities are making this change as they are intent on “wiping out the rotten language of capitalism,”, RFA reported.

Earlier, there have been reported instances of people being punished for speaking like South Koreans. There have also been shocking cases where people were executed for trying to sell contraband videos and music.

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