North Korean Officials Target Hair Salon Over Kim Jong-un Diss – Mashable

Posted: Friday, April 18, 2014

Apparently not all publicity is good publicity in the eyes of North Korea — especially when it comes to state-mandated haircuts.

A London hair salon was targeted last week by alleged North Korean embassy officials over an unflattering advertisement that features the country’s leader Kim Jong-un and his infamous ‘do, according to multiple reports.

The ad promoted a 15% discount on haircuts at the M&M Hair Academy throughout April, and aimed to be a clever way to bolster sales. It included a smiling photo of Kim, with the words “Bad hair day?” emblazoned across his chest. The ad went up on April 9, the BBC reported.

Kim Jong-un Poster
M&M Hair Academy barber Karim Nabbach shows off the offending advertisement.

Unfortunately for the salon, however, the North Korean embassy is only a mile away.

Britain NKorea Hair

A view of M&M Hair Academy in London, Wednesday, April 16, 2014.

Image: Kirsty Wigglesworth/Associated Press

Two men showed up, and began taking pictures and writing notes the day after the ad went up, the The Guardian reported. They then entered the salon, and asked who was responsible for the ad, reportedly claiming that it was disrespectful and had to come down.

“I told them this is England and not North Korea and told them to get their lawyers,” Mo Nabbach, M&M’s manager, told the London Evening Standard. “The two guys were wearing suits and they were very serious. It was very threatening.”

Nabbach said he took the ad down, but was encouraged by clients to put it back up in the window. He eventually contacted local police after asking the men to leave. They did not specifically say where they worked, but a Metropolitan Police Service spokesperson told The Guardian that officers had been in contact with the North Korean embassy.

On Monday, the North Korean embassy sent a letter to the UK’s Foreign Office, complaining about the ad, according to the Evening Standard. The letter demanded that the Foreign Office take “necessary action to stop the provocation.”

Kim’s government allegedly mandated last month that all male university students are now required to sport the block-like hairdo, although the Associated Press reported that visitors to North Korea have not noticed a change in hairstyle choice.

The North Korean embassy did not immediately respond to Mashable‘s request for comment.

With files from Anita Li

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