People in North Korea must not laugh – level 3

23-12-2021 15:00

North Korea remembered the 10th anniversary of the death of Kim Jong-il, who ruled the country from 1994 until his death in 2011 from a heart attack.

His son and current leader, Kim Jong-un, attended a ceremony in the capital Pyongyang at the Kumsusan Palace of the Sun mausoleum where the embalmed bodies of his father and grandfather Kim Ill-sung lie under glass.

The country also started an 11-day ban on laughing and drinking alcohol as a part of the mourning. People cannot engage in leisure activities and even celebrate their own birthdays if they fall within the mourning period, and grocery shopping is banned on the exact day of the elder Kim’s death, December 17.

On Friday, multiple newspapers, all tightly controlled by the government, published articles praising Kim Jong-un. The government’s growing nuclear weapons is the center of Kim’s 10-year rule, and the newspapers describe him as a powerful treasured sword that stops potential problems from the US.

Difficult words: embalm (to treat a dead body with chemicals, drugs, or balsams to protect it from decay), lie under glass (to be under glass like a thing at a store or a museum), mourning (the feeling of being sad that a person died and to show somebody has died).

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