The 2018 Winter Olympics is preparing to conclude in PyeongChang on Sunday, but North Korea’s 25.3 million citizens haven’t seen a single second of coverage.
Tensions may have eased on the Korean Demilitarized Zone, but North Korea’s state-run media has opted not to broadcast the Olympics.
Via Associated Press:
North Korean authorities maintain tight control about what does and does not go on the airwaves. It’s possible they’re waiting to see how the high-level interaction between North and South goes before they decide how — or if — to show anything from the Olympics themselves.
The last time North Korea aired live coverage was when Portugal buried North Korea 7-0 in the 2010 World Cup.
Despite South and North Korea’s temporary detente during the Winter Olympics, the latter may also be hesitant to show millions of people how successful their neighbors have been at executing an Olympic Games 50 miles south of their border. Experts believe it’s simply because there’s no incentive to do so. North Korea has sent 22 athletes to the Olympics, but their athletic delegation hasn’t procured a single medal.
Alternatively, their all-female cheer squads and pop stars have launched a successful charm offensive throughout the games. Marytn Williams, a North Korean media watcher says that North Korea has broadcast coverage of every Olympics dating back to the 2004 Athens Games. However, something has changed in South Korea.
National sports news programs have shown highlights of European basketball, cycle races in Dubai and other international sports airing outside of South Korea. National newspapers have also avoided written coverage of the Olympics.
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