North Korean Men Feel the Heat

A media campaign to quit smoking, as well as pressure from wives, daughters, mothers and girlfriends appears to be paying off in North Korea, where an estimated 54 percent of adult males smoke.

The ratio of male smokers in 2013 was down 8 percent when compared with 2009 and “the number of nonsmokers is remarkably increasing with each passing day,” according to a Health Ministry official.

Leading the effort: Ri Yong Ok, a 57-year-old pharmacist who developed a smoking cessation medicine made of traditional Korean mountain herbs and medicinal plants. "It's the best in the world," she boasts.


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