A woman torched herself and her family after her in-laws tried kick her out for being infertile.
The woman, who is in her early 30s but has not been named, was married to the son of a minister in North Korea’s North Hamgyong Province.
Five years into their marriage and with the couple having failed to conceive, her in-laws took her to a maternity hospital.
There it was confirmed that she was unable to bear children.
The news prompted her relatives to demand that she leave the family home and divorce their son.
The woman, whose family lives in Sinpo, was angered by the decision and decided to report the incident to the provincial party committee instead of returning home.
When she was told that they could not process a petition on a Saturday, she attempted to travel to capital Pyongyang and appeal to the party’s head office.
The woman’s plans were foiled when an official sent her home for not carrying a travel permit, Daily NK reported.
“After returning to the home of her in-laws, she decided that life was no longer worth living and set the house ablaze with gasoline one evening when the whole family was at home,” a source, who requested anonymity for fear of their safety, told the publication.
“The woman, her parents-in-law and husband were unable to escape from the flames and all perished, with the house and everything inside it burned to the ground.”
Neighbours attempted to put out the fire with buckets of water but it proved impossible.
Local residents are reportedly critical of the family for kicking the woman out due to her infertility, Daily NK reported.
“Kumya County is attempting to keep the incident as quiet as possible by reporting it as an ordinary house fire,” the source added.