Some of North Korea’s delegation to the PyeongChang Olympics stepped into a really diverse globe from the sheltered and tightly controlled model of truth they’re accustomed to at property.
“[The] ambiance of freedom will be unfamiliar,” claims Seoul resident Yang Yong-soo, 62. “They’ll almost certainly consider it’s a diverse dimension.”
CNN’s Will Ripley has documented from North Korea seventeen moments and has observed just how diverse the realities are between the two nations.
Art: The art in South Korea — even simple ads — is a stark departure from North Koreans’ state-controlled publicity to any form of creativeness or tradition.
Rooms across North Korea attribute notable pictures of the nation’s late leaders, portraits of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il. Virtually all monuments and public artwork shows across the nation attribute their likenesses or are devoted to the ruling Personnel’ Celebration of Korea.
Foreigners: The North Korean delegates possibly encountered numerous a lot more individuals from distinct cultures and ethnicities on this excursion than they at any time experienced ahead of.
North Korea prides alone on currently being racially pure and homogenous. Inside of the communist country, their exposure to non-North Koreans is tightly controlled. The govt also prohibits North Koreans from coloring their hair any shade but their natural dim black or brown. Unusual hair colors like blue probably amazed them.
Food: A stark distinction also exists in the wide variety of food offered across Pyeongchang.
Beef, chicken and pork are all unaffordable luxuries for most North Koreans, who have experienced recurring famine and food insecurity.
“I believe they’ll come to feel that what they see with their very own eyes are much diverse from what they learned,” claims Yoo Hyun, 30, of Geoje, South Korea.
Transportation: Ahead of arriving at the Olympics, the North Korean delegation boarded the KTX, a large-pace practice that travels virtually a hundred ninety miles for every hour. It’s not just the velocity that is new for them — their rail and bus network relies on aging, out-of-date infrastructure and technologies. Trains and buses are more mature and slower than their counterparts in the south.
Liberty of movement: Even folks’s movements inside North Korea are point out-controlled. Citizens need to get travel permits to depart their home provinces to go to Pyongyang.
Telephones and net: Cell telephones, even smartphones, are not a unusual sight in North Korea’s funds, but South Korea’s totally free and open web is. North Koreans in Pyeongchang are barred from accessing the web. The nation’s stringent censors would possibly have discovered a good deal of the content material “yellow,” a North Korean time period for inappropriate and subversive. Material crucial of their nation, their method and most importantly their chief, Kim Jong Un, would have established off instant alarm bells.
Tv: The delegates almost certainly got their first prospect to see television that wasn’t managed by the state throughout their pay a visit to — if they have been permitted to view Television set unsupervised, which is not likely. Despite the fact that North Korea is reduce off from the internet, it does have state-managed intranet and tv channels, though the content is monitored and censored. Smuggled media material, on thumb drives and DVDs, are unusual luxuries in the region.
Avenue lights: Flashing lights and neon signs dot the streets of Pyeongchang, a big departure from the often darkened streets in North Korea.
Cars: There are substantially much more automobiles on the streets of South Korea than the members of the delegation would at any time see in the north, including brand new domestic designs. In North Korea, several of the autos are older imports.
Electrical power: The couple of escalators and elevators across Pyongyang are typically stalled by electricity outages. Even with the influx of website visitors for the Olympics, electricity has remained continual in Pyeongchang.
“I consider they would have been stunned by services on their own,” claims Incheon resident Yang Yu-jin, 22. “They have occur out following getting confined, so I think for them it’d feel very free and new. They’ll think it’s like encountering a new planet.”