North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un has issued a plan to make sexual relationships between teenagers punishable by law following a rise in “sexual immorality,” according to Radio Free Asia. The increase in the number of high school students having sex in North Korea is being blamed on “decadent capitalist influences,” such as pornography being illegally brought in from other countries.
A source from the North Pyongan province told Radio Free Asia that authorities are cracking down on sexual behavior among teens in order to preserve society’s conservative foundation in North Korea. “Recently more and more high school boys and girls are engaging in immoral sexual deviance, and the Central Committee [of the Korean Workers’ Party] has issued a directive calling for strong measures against them.”
The sourced added, “The reason behind this order is that the local Kimilsungist-Kimjongilist Youth League in Sinuiju [a city on the border with China] inspected high school students, and found that some high school boys and girls hang out with local gangsters, live together, and commit immoral acts such as prostitution.”
With North Korean Authorities declaring “immoral sexual activity” among teenagers “a treasonous act” and authorities issuing a “warning of strong punishment,” the source said that “students are shaking with fear.”
It is not clear how “sexual immorality” is defined or what the punishment would be.
North Korea Plans to Track High School Students’ Phones With an App Called ‘Red Flag’
In order to combat the issue of teenagers being promiscuous, Radio Free Asia’s source said they plan on tracking students’ personal smartphones. “They ordered [schools] to check students for phones or other devices they might have with them.”
All smartphones in North Korea have an application installed called Red Flag, which keeps a running log of webpages visited by their owner. The app takes random screenshots of online activity through a secondary app, Trace Viewer, and these screenshots cannot be deleted by the user and can be reviewed by North Korean authorities at any time.
The source added, “The Central Committee pointed out that the reason why [sexual promiscuity] is so common in students these days is because they are imbued with decadent capitalist culture, due to the increase in electronic media, including mobile phones.”
What is Sex Education Like in the Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea?
In an NK News report in 2013, Ji Min Kang wrote:
In North Korea, sex is restricted and its pleasures are enjoyed by a privileged few. As such there are only a few very limited, very exaggerated stories that get shared, as sex is not something that is talked about much in the open. Still, North Koreans are people just like everyone else, so things like affairs and abortion do take place. However, such behavior is the ‘forbidden fruit’ that can destroy one’s wealth and power.
For North Koreans, everything to do with sex is filthy and embarrassing and you are supposed to hide it. Boys therefore cannot understand the biological changes in their bodies and are not aware of why they start having desires for girls. Nor are girls informed about the changes in their bodies, except from their mothers.
Kang wrote, “Whenever one of my friends had a wet dream, everyone gathered to console him over his ‘unknown disease.’ I didn’t know where a baby came from until I had turned 13.”
With North Korea’s new order, a second source from the North Hamgyong province told Radio Free Asia that “there should be a meeting at least once a month with school principals, party secretaries, and senior members of the Kimilsungist-Kimjongilist Youth League to discuss students’ unhealthy sexual behaviors.”
This source added that teachers are nervous about the new ruling, as well. “Teachers are anxious because of the warning that school principals, advisors to the Kimilsungist-Kimjongilist Youth League and the Korean Children’s Union, and school teachers, will also be punished if there is a serious sexual violation among students.”
Due to coronavirus, the source added that many believe the uptick in sexual activity is connected to the fact that students haven’t been in school since winter break and had more free time at home.