North Korean authorities are recruiting young women to be part of a revived so-called “pleasure squad” that entertains dictator Kim Jong Un, according to a published report.
The South Korean newspaper Chosun Ilbo said that the group that used to perform for Kim’s father, Kim Jong Il, was disbanded shortly after the elder Kim’s death in December 2011. The members were made to sign a pledge of secrecy in exchange for money and gifts. According to the paper, the women who worked as entertainers received an amount of money worth $4,000 before returning to their hometowns.
The Chosun Ilbo reported that women who worked in Kim’s palaces and summer homes as maids and cleaners received about half that amount. Both groups of women also reportedly received home appliances.
Britain’s Daily Telegraph quoted Toshimitsu Shigemura, a professor at Tokyo’s Waseda University described as an authority on North Korean affairs, as saying that Kim believed the women who entertained his father knew too many state secrets.