North Korea 'bans leather coats so people can't dress like Kim Jong-un'

Since despot Kim Jong-un appeared on TV wearing a long leather coat two years ago, the look has become popular, insiders say

North Korea’s ruler Kim Jong-un wears a leather trench coat (

Image: KCNA via KNS / AFP via Getty Image)

North Korea has cracked down on people wearing leather trench coats, it is alleged – and authorities claim it is disrespectful to Leader Kim Jong-un.

Since The Despot appeared on TV wearing a long leather coat two years ago, the look has become popular, insiders say.

In the past few months, Kim’s sister Kim Yo-jong has also been pictured with one.

Now, the Daily Star reports, The police are targeting people who are selling the fashionable clothes.

A resident of Pyongsong, a city north of the capital, Pyongyang, said Radio Free Asia that the coats have gained in appeal this year after leading women, including Kim Jong-uns sister and likely successor Kim Yo-jong, were discovered in them.

The look is said to have become popular in North Korea
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The source said, “Now the leather coat has also become a symbol for powerful women.

“When leather coats were recognized as a symbol of power, private clothing retailers began asking commercial company officials to import synthetic leather since September this year.

“They copied the design of the leather coats worn by the Highest Dignity and officials, and now they are being sold in the market.”

The resident added that Pyongsong police recently started cracking down on both vendors and porters, despite young men protesting the new measures.

Authorities have called the fad an “unclean trend to question the authority of the Highest Dignity,” said the resident.

It is said that leather coats have become a symbol of power
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Unlike long trench coats, leather jackets have been worn in North Korea since the early 2000s, popularized by illegally smuggled South Korean films circulating in provincial cities.

Another resident from North Pyongan Province said that coats are both “imported from China” and “domestically” made with imported materials.

“Wealthy entrepreneurs can import the fabric for the coats by placing an order with state-owned trading companies that have partially resumed maritime smuggling,” they said.

Although North Korea stopped trading with China in January 2020 due to Covid, “official smuggling” by state-owned companies was partially resumed in April of this year.

A Chinese customs document seen from Free Asia Radio reportedly confirms that dozens of meters of leather were imported into North Korea that month.

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