Football might be coming home, but it seems that the people of North Korea will have to wait a little bit longer to see it happen.
North Korean TV viewers have reportedly received delayed coverage of the FIFA World Cup since it began on June 14.
The first hint of the tournament came after Argentina’s loss to France was televised on the evening of July 1 – over 24 hours after the game took place.
The games are also being shown without a time clock on screen, which allows them to be crudely edited for length.
For instance, the July 9 broadcast of Brazil v Belgium lasted just under 70 minutes, despite the entire game clocking in at 96 minutes long.
There’s also been a blackout on Japan games, as their loss against Belgium was the only group of 16 game that wasn’t broadcast.
It’s believed that that is due to North Korea’s frosty relationship with Japan, having repeatedly shunned diplomatic talks.
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North Korean viewers have also missed the chance to see South Korea’s historic 2-0 defeat of Germany, despite a recent summit between Kim Jong-un and the south’s Kim Jae-in.
Although World Cup games have previously been broadcast via South Korea’s SBS held World Cup rights, North Korean state television has this year secures TV rights for the first time ever.
It’s yet to be revealed when the crunch semi-finals will be shown.