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Rather than be discreet about their extramarital relations, rich and powerful men in the secretive communist country are showing off their mistresses in public as a status symbol of their 'achievements'. North Korea 's top business 'elite' are increasingly being "expected" to keep a mistress, a top expert has claimed. Moreover, rather than be discreet about their extramarital relations, rich and powerful men are showing off their mistresses in public as a status symbol of their 'achievements'.
The startling revelations - which are somewhat at odds with the traditional view of the communist state's repressed culture - were made by a specialist in Korean Studies. Andrei Nikolaevich Lankov explained prostitution - still outlawed - was traditionally for goods or favours rather than money but has become easier in recent times.
Dr Lankov explained that the nation inherited its traditional values from the former USSR under the reign of its former supreme leader Kim Il Sung who died in Attitudes to sex are changing under the rule of their latest dictator Kim Jong-un however. Dr Lankov, who taught Korean history and also writes columns for the English-language daily The Korea Times, explained that prostitution - which wasn't always in exchanged just for money - has become easier in recent years.
He added that a hostess club at a luxury hotel in Pyongyang which quietly encouraged prostitution in the s closed down due to lack of trade - as North Koreans and visitors from Soviet states were banned. Dr Lankov explained that divorce is still stigmatised in North Korea - but since the rise of the new market economy in the late 90s it has never been easier to "find a room for money Several women are known to have fled across the border to the South rather than divorce their husband.
A study revealed Sex remains a taboo subject within the secretive state - with little or no sex education given in schools. By Stephen Jones Assistant Editor. It's never been easier to be a prostitute in North Korea - but sex before marriage is still frowned upon Image: Getty Get the biggest daily news stories by email Subscribe See our privacy notice More newsletters.