North Korea has enforced a full crackdown on citizens wearing skinny jeans and tight shirts and even dyed hair. In its crusade against the infiltration of foreign or western culture, the government is ramping up measures to ensure that such “capitalist fashion” does not impede the country’s ideals of socialism.

According to Radio Free Asia, North Korea’s Socialist Youth League held an educational session last April where it “defined the act of imitating foreign fashion and hairstyles as capitalist flair " and anti-socialist practices. The government sees these as a major potential problem for North Korea, being influenced much by South Korea and its infatuation with western fashion, culture as well as the use of foreign words to conduct themselves. 

The league was formerly called the Kimilsungist-Kimjongilist Youth League which was modeled after a group of young adults and teenagers spreading communist propaganda known as the Soviet Komsomol. A source familiar with the current movement said the youth league has been tasked to patrol young adults mostly targeting women in their 20s and 30s. These women will be apprehended if they have dyed their hair and/or have grown their hair long up to their waists, as well as those who wear clothes brandishing foreign words and letters, and tight clothing. 

“If they are caught, they are made to wait on the side of the road until the patrols can finish their crackdown in that area. Only then will they be taken to the youth league office in the district, where they must write letters confessing their crimes,” the source said. From there, those caught will have to contact someone to bring them appropriate clothing prior to being released.  

Authorities have reportedly ordered North Korea’s youth organization to surrender their mobile phones for inspection to check if they have been watching and sharing foreign media. It was also said these are being checked to ensure they are not using South Korean slang, or spelling words the way their southern counterpart do.

Such patrols have been seen in the province of North Hamgyong, specifically in the marketplace in the city of Chongjin. The area is known as a hangout spot for local youth where violators are subjected to public exposure via Third Broadcast, which is a government-controlled paging system placed around cities and towns that broadcast socialist propaganda.

On top of this, the North Korean government is also working to suppress what it considers illegal capitalistic activities. In recent arrests, six fortune-tellers, as well as fake traditional medicine sellers were arrested and sentenced to seven years of hard labor and thrown in jail.

north-korea-3340884_960_720 Representation Image Giant Bronze Statues of Kim Jong Il and Kim Il Sung Pyongyang Alex_Berlin/ Pixabay