North Korean authorities arrest dance teacher and students after she teaches ‘capitalist’ dance steps

North Korean authorities arrest a dance teacher and her students after she taught them ‘capitalist’ dance steps

  • A dance teacher was arrested for teaching ‘capitalist’ dance moves to teenagers
  • The teacher used the private dance studio to supplement her salary
  • She was in breach of a 2020 law to limit the use of foreign media

North Korean authorities have reportedly arrested a dance teacher and several students for using foreign media to teach “capitalist” dance steps.

The dance teacher from the city of Pyongsong in the northwest of the country used a USB stick containing foreign songs and dance videos to teach teenagers.

The USB drive was seized and the teacher arrested.

The secretive Asian country passed the Elimination of Reactionary Thought and Culture Act in late 2020 to crack down on the distribution and surveillance of foreign media – especially from capitalist countries like the United States and South Korea.

Moving from capitalist countries like South Korea is prohibited for North Koreans

The law provides for the death penalty for the most serious offences.

The draconian legislation has been used to punish drivers for tinting their car windows and using South Korean-style speech and slang.

A resident of North Korea told RFA’s Korea Service: “The anti-socialist inspection group caught a female dance teacher in her 30s who was teaching foreign-style disco dances to teenage students in Yangji-dong in the city. from Pyongsong.

“The Anti-Socialism Inspection Group, a joint operation of the State Security Department and the police, has cracked down hard on people who watch South Korean films and distribute foreign media.

The source claimed that although there is generally more lax enforcement around Seollal, a Lunar New Year holiday, this year has seen a heavy crackdown.

The law was passed by North Korea's ruling Communist Party to limit the influence of foreign culture

The law was passed by North Korea’s ruling Communist Party to limit the influence of foreign culture

RFA sources said the woman graduated in choreography from Pyongsong University of the Arts and was assigned to teach at Okchon High School in Pyongsong.

She reportedly ran the private dance academy to supplement her salary of 3,000 won ($0.60) for her assigned work and charged $10 for a one-hour session.

A second source said, “They preferred to learn how to dance like they do in South Korea, China and America, rather than North Korean style. So she taught them how.

Another Pyongsong resident told RFA: “A provincial party official’s granddaughter was caught with an SD card installed on her smartphone and it contained South Korean movies.” During the investigation, she disclosed how and where she purchased the SD card,’ the third source said on condition of anonymity.

“The wealthy class usually buy USB sticks smuggled by sea from China. In the end, those who illegally sell or lend these USB keys and SD cards to teenagers are caught one after the other, including a relative of a public prosecutor.

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