North Korea has closed down a model village in Pyongyang because it reminded Kim Jong-un of the uncle he executed.
Pyongyang Folk Village, which featured miniature version of the capital city’s buildings and monuments, was a multi-million dollar brainchild of Kim’s father, Kim Jong-il, and opened for tourism in 2012.
The construction of the project was overseen by Kim’s uncle, Jang Song-Thaek, who was the second most powerful man in North Korea after Kim, before he was executed for treason in December 2013 by his nephew.
Jang was one of the chief influences in securing Kim as the Supreme Leader of North Korea after his father died, but was killed for being a counter-revolutionary. The state media announced Jang was presumably killed by a machine firing squad, a common method of execution in the DPRK.
After his execution, Jang was described as “despicable human scum” and “factional filth” by the media.
A South Korean news agency, Yonhap, cited sources stating Kim ordered the closure of the theme park because it reminded him of Jang whenever he visited.
“Whenever Kim passed by Pyongyang Folk Village, he often complained it brought Jang back to his mind,” a source quoted in the media. Another source said the Workers' Party of Korea was shredding promotional pamphlet of the “mini Pyongyang,” which included replicas of the capital’s landmarks dating back since the Koryo dynasty, which ruled from 900 AD to 1300 AD.
Nick Bonner, director of Koryo Tours, a Chinese travel agency that specializes in North Korean tours, said the country’s tourism department informed them the site was only being temporarily closed for maintenance.
Kim Jong-un is no stranger to killing off relatives and for the most minor transgressions, which including dozing off, clapping half-heartedly, watching soap operas and even grieving.