North Korea has closed massage parlours as part of a crackdown on the illegal sex trade, a South Korean aid group said Wednesday.
The drive began last year, with masseuses asked to switch jobs, Good Friends said in a newsletter. Prostitution is illegal in the reclusive communist country.
"Under a directive issued last year, North Korean authorities have shut down massage parlours, which were seen there as a hotbed of illegal sex service," a Good Friends official told AFP.
The group, which provides aid to North Korea, declined to give details or disclose its sources.
Defectors say poverty-driven prostitution has increased in the totalitarian country despite a steady campaign to weed out "decadent" foreign culture.
In September last year, North Korean soldiers were told to shun alcohol, sex and money, according to a defectors' group in Seoul.