BEIJING — The favorite pop band of North Korea’s young leader abruptly boarded a plane to return home on Saturday, just hours before an important concert here. The concert would have been the band’s first one overseas and was one of three in the Chinese capital intended to improve relations between the nations.
The group, Moranbong Band, has about 20 members, all slim young women who wear tight dresses and high heels while performing both Western pop songs and North Korean revolutionary standards. They are a contrast to the staid image of the brand of authoritarian socialism that has existed for decades in...
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