North Korea on major sports drive, says Pyongyang official

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North Korean leader Kim Jong Un watches a basketball game between former U.S. NBA basketball players and North Korean players of the Hwaebul team of the DPRK with Dennis Rodman at Pyongyang Indoor Stadium

By Peter Rutherford SEOUL (Reuters) – North Korea hopes to harness the power of sport to raise its image on the world stage through international competitions such as the Olympic Games, and to bolster labour output and national defence by improving its citizens’ well-being, the head of a North Korean sports delegation said on Wednesday. In a rare speech by a North Korean official delivered in the rival South, Yang Song Ho told a sports science congress in Incheon, west of Seoul that the North was working to make sport an everyday concern for the masses. Yang, an assistant professor at Pyongyang’s Korea University of Physical Education, is part of a North Korean delegation that arrived in the South on Tuesday to attend buildup events for the Incheon Asian Games, which open on Sept. 19.


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