The Hermit Kingdom is tightly guarded about what websites citizens can access and restricts what outsiders can see, but an apparent technical glitch earlier this week resulted outside access to North Korea’s websites, according to New York Magazine.
There are only 28 websites, all of which appear to be propagandistic or governmental in nature — a state agency news site, the state insurer, a sports website, a recipe website, and a maritime long-range identification and tracking system data center website, to name a few. (A complete list of all 28 sites, along with screenshots and descriptions, is available here.)
North Korea’s state-run news agency, Korea Central News Agency, offers “news” in English and other languages. The items featured most prominently are stories of their de facto leader, Kim Jong-un, visiting agricultural sites and newly built factories.
Other news items serve as warnings or written chastisements of those who have taken actions against the state. A story entitled “Park Geun Hye Group Accused of Trying to Adopt UN ‘Resolution of New Sanctions’ against DPRK,” is one such example. The piece decries the South Korean president Park Geun Hye’s commitment with President Obama to deploy “more effective” sanctions against the country.
“The south Korean puppet authorities are running amuck to cook up a UN ‘resolution of new sanctions’ against the DPRK over its nuclear warhead explosion test,” the story reads. “Traitor Park Geun Hye recently convened a ‘state council meeting’ at which she said ‘nuclear threat is coming from the north’ and cried out for ‘way of new sanctions’ and ‘effective counteraction.'”
In the wake of North Korea’s latest nuclear test earlier this month, and long-range rocket test on Tuesday, South Korea has hinted at kicking their northern neighbors out of the UN. It appears Kim Jon-un may be amping up demonstrations in an effort to intimidate other countries into lifting heavy sanctions placed upon his country earlier this year.
In March, North Korean officials told citizens to prepare for another famine: “We may have to go on an arduous march, a time when we will again have to eat the roots of grass,” an editorial in the official Workers’ Party of Korea newspaper read, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Another item published on the state-run news site is a story about five women who gave birth in the midst of devastating floods that have killed at least 138 people, and displaced another 100,000, according to official counts.
This is an alleged quote from a woman who gave birth in the midst of massive flooding: “Many officials and builders have showed warm congratulations and deep care for me, an ordinary citizen, though they are busy with the recovery efforts. This grateful scene can be seen only in our socialist system, I dare say.”
North Korea’s websites aren’t all verbal defenestrations of dissidents. One website features recipes.
Another focuses on sports news.
North Korea has offered its citizens Internet access since 2000, but most of the world didn’t know North Koreans even had an Internet until 2014, when it was temporarily disabled by hackers. The country’s network is reportedly free for all who have access to a computer, but obtaining one can be tricky, as North Koreans must get permission from the government to own one.