March 4 (UPI) -- North Korea slammed a popular South Korean television series that has aired on Netflix worldwide, claiming the production exploits national division for the sake of profit.
Pyongyang propaganda service Uriminzokkiri, which targets an audience outside the North, said Wednesday Crash Landing on You, which first aired on South Korean channel tvN in 2019, is an "unacceptable act of provocation."
On Wednesday, North Korean state media said the drama, the second-highest-rated show in South Korea's cable television history, was a misstep in inter-Korea relations.
"The tragedy of national division, which must be deeply lamented while beating one's chest, has been turned into a moneymaking scheme and the object of entertainment," Uriminzokkiri said.
"Recently the South Korean authorities and filmmakers have been tossing around unreliable and impure anti-North Korean films and television shows, filled with fraud and fabrication," state media said.
The propaganda service also said shows like Crash Landing on You are the kind of "unbearable blasphemy" targeting a unitary Korean people, and evidence of the "rotten and sick South Korean society."
North Korea bans the viewing of South Korean media, and severely punishes citizens who either watch or distribute television shows. Defectors have previously said distributors of media have been executed as a warning to others.
Pyongyang's isolation has deepened since the outbreak of the new strain of coronavirus, but it is also taking steps as infections may be slowing in China, the source of the epidemic.
The Russian Embassy in Pyongyang said Wednesday North Korea has lifted its one-month quarantine of foreigners.
"In a new note from the Protocol Department of the DPRK Foreign Ministry, we were informed that since March 2 when the quarantine ended, besides the network catering for foreigners in the diplomatic quarter, which includes the Pyongyang department store, the Taedonggang diplomatic club and the Rakwon and Taesong department stores will be also open for us," the Russian Embassy said on Facebook.