What North Korea's Olympic delegation saw for the first time

A few of North Korea’s delegation to the PyeongChang Olympics stepped into an overly other global from the sheltered and tightly managed model of fact they are aware of at house.

It is not simply new generation the North Koreans encountered on their three-day talk over with. It’s the inflow of everybody, from all corners of the globe.

“[The] environment of freedom shall be unfamiliar,” says Seoul resident Yang Yong-soo, 62. “They will almost definitely suppose it is a other measurement.”

CNN’s Will Ripley has reported from North Korea 17 occasions and has observed simply how other the realities are between the 2 nations.

Public art installation in Gangneung, South Korea.Public art installation in Gangneung, South Korea.

Artwork: The artwork in South Korea — even easy commercials — is a stark departure from North Koreans’ state-controlled publicity to any form of creativity or tradition.

Rooms throughout North Korea characteristic distinguished pictures of the rustic’s past due leaders, portraits of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il. Just about all monuments and public artwork presentations around the nation characteristic their likenesses or are devoted to the ruling Staff’ Celebration of Korea.

Foreigners: The North Korean delegates almost definitely encountered many extra folks from other cultures and ethnicities in this go back and forth than they ever had sooner than.

North Korea prides itself on being racially natural and homogenous. Within the communist nation, their publicity to non-North Koreans is tightly managed. The federal government additionally prohibits North Koreans from coloring their hair any colour however their herbal darkish black or brown. Ordinary hair colours like blue almost definitely shocked them.

Korean BBQ. Such meats are unaffordable luxuries for most North Koreans.Korean BBQ. Such meats are unaffordable luxuries for most North Koreans.

Meals: A stark distinction additionally exists in the wide range of meals to be had throughout Pyeongchang.

Pork, rooster and red meat are all unaffordable luxuries for many North Koreans, who’ve skilled repeated famine and meals lack of confidence.

“I believe they’re going to really feel that what they see with their very own eyes are a lot other from what they discovered,” says Yoo Hyun, 30, of Geoje, South Korea.

Aboard South Korea's high-speed KTX train.Aboard South Korea's high-speed KTX train.

Transportation: Ahead of arriving on the Olympics, the North Korean delegation boarded the KTX, a high-speed educate that travels just about 190 miles according to hour. It is not simply the rate this is new for them — their rail and bus community depends upon growing old, old-fashioned infrastructure and generation. Trains and buses are older and slower than their opposite numbers within the south.

Freedom of motion: Even folks’s actions inside North Korea are state-controlled. Voters should get commute allows to depart their house provinces to talk over with Pyongyang.

Telephones and web: Mobile phones, even smartphones, don’t seem to be an extraordinary sight in North Korea’s capital, however South Korea’s loose and open web is. North Koreans in Pyeongchang are barred from getting access to the web. The country’s strict censors would almost definitely have discovered a large number of the content material “yellow,” a North Korean time period for irrelevant and subversive. Content material essential in their nation, their gadget and most significantly their chief, Kim Jong Un, would have prompt fast alarm bells.

Tv: The delegates almost definitely were given their first alternative to look tv that wasn’t managed by way of the state throughout their talk over with — in the event that they have been allowed to observe TV unsupervised, which is not going. Even if North Korea is bring to an end from the web, it does have state-controlled intranet and tv channels, even though the content material is monitored and censored. Smuggled media content material, on thumb drives and DVDs, are uncommon luxuries within the nation.

The brightly lit streets of Gangneung, South Korea.The brightly lit streets of Gangneung, South Korea.

Boulevard lighting fixtures: Flashing lighting fixtures and neon indicators dot the streets of Pyeongchang, a large departure from the continuously darkened streets in North Korea.

Vehicles: There are considerably extra vehicles at the streets of South Korea than the individuals of the delegation would ever see within the north, together with emblem new home fashions. In North Korea, lots of the vehicles are older imports.

Electrical energy: The few escalators and elevators throughout Pyongyang are continuously stalled by way of energy outages. Even with the inflow of holiday makers for the Olympics, energy has remained consistent in Pyeongchang.

“I believe they might were shocked by way of amenities themselves,” says Incheon resident Yang Yu-jin, 22. “They have got pop out after being confined, so I believe for them it might really feel very loose and new. They will suppose it is like experiencing a brand new global.”

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