Kim Jong-un, the North Korean dictator, just transformed into the Grinch of the country as he has prohibited his people from drinking and singing on Christmas Day. In 2016, he banned all Christmas celebrations and instead forced North Koreans to celebrate his grandmother, Kim Jong-suk.
Dubbed “the Sacred Mother of the Revolution,” she was born on Christmas Eve in 1919, according to USA Today.
While Christmas is generally a festive holiday in North Korea, the country’s leader has reportedly prohibited any "gatherings that involve alcohol and singing" during Christmas this year.
According to South Korea’s National Intelligence Service, North Korea “has devised a system whereby party organs report people’s economic hardships on a daily basis, and it has banned any gatherings related to drinking, singing and other entertainment and is strengthening control of outside information.”
While the U.N. puts sanctions on North Korea’s development of nuclear weapons, Kim is issuing his own sanctions on holiday festivities.
Even though the country does not have a massive Christian population, some of its citizens have been known to practice Christianity and observe the annual festival in the past.
The North Korean leader has waged a war on Christmas for quite some time now. He reportedly told South Korea a few years ago that lighting a 30-foot tall tree on a hill near the demilitarized zone could lead to “unexpected consequences,” according to AOL.
Christmas trees in Pyongyang are decorated with ornaments and lights in shops and restaurants, but there are no religious symbols.
This isn't the only time Kim has moved to squash holiday cheer.Last month, North Korea banned Mother’s Day messages, after Kim introduced the day in 2012 to celebrate mothers who help to uphold his regime and to commemorate “The Duty of Mothers in the Education of Children,” a Nov. 16, 1961, speech by his grandfather Kim Il-sung.
“On the significant Mother’s Day every year, all the sons and daughters of the country extend warm congratulations to the mothers bringing up their children with their love, feelings and devotion and upholding the socialist country,” reported the official Korean Central News Agency.
Thumbnail Credits: Reuters, KCNA