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N. Korea's Kim Jong-il opposed to handshakes as alien, unhygienic

RIA Novosti

15/01/2007 13:13 MOSCOW, January 15 (RIA Novosti) - North Korea intends to disabuse its citizens of handshakes as a practice alien to Koreans, replacing it with a slight bow instead, a nationwide newspaper reported Monday.

Rodong Sinmun quoted the country's leader as criticizing handshakes.

"People should salute each other the Korean way. Shaking hands when meeting people is a European tradition. Nor are handshakes good hygiene-wise," Kim Jong-il is quoted as saying.

He said a slight bow of the head is a more civilized and hygienic form of greeting in Korea.

"From time immemorial people have bowed to each other when meeting. According to etiquette, a younger person bowed first, giving way to an older one," Rodong Sinmun said.

"This wonderful form of greeting in our nation has developed during the era of the Workers Party of Korea, in line with the dictates of the time, and will continue to thrive in the future," the North Korean party organ said.



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