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North Korea frightens and fascinates

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North Korea frightens and fascinates


Despite its rogue status in the international community, North Korea remains a magnet for tourists.

Here at Dandong, on the Chinese side of the Yalu River border, holidaymakers are fascinated by their mysterious neighbour. “North Korea has carried out this nuclear test to raise their power stakes in the world. They don’t want to encourage an American attack, and I don’t think it will happen,” said one tourist. No-one really knows what will happen, nor what they are thinking on the other side of the border. Politicians are nervous, but South Korean workers from a joint-venture project in the north remain optimistic. “We’ve been crossing the border as normal, and the factory is calm despite the issues. The atmosphere in the South is bad, but the factory is peaceful,” said one man. “Of course I’m worried, but I’m going into the North because I have to work,” added another. There is an air of boring normality at the frontier, with traffic queuing up to cross, even as world leaders queue up to denounce the North’s increasingly aggressive behaviour.

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