On the night of the 11th [in Korea], South Korea will face off against Japan for the bronze medal in Olympic soccer in the Welsh capital, Cardiff, a match-up between old rivals that seems to be even garnering interest north of the DMZ.
On the 10th, an inside source from near the border told Daily NK, “[Chosun] Central TV has been broadcasting news about the Olympics daily since the opening ceremony, but that has mostly been after the fact which tends to dilute people’s interest. So, those with the ability have been watching Chinese broadcasts.”
“Two days ago people watched the South Chosun against Brazil match, and when I went to my workplace the following day everybody knew the score,” the source went on. “Seems like anybody with electricity or a battery and transformer had seen it.”
The news is unsurprising. Ever since the late 1990s when trade across the Sino-North Korean border started to grow, the number of people watching Chinese TV inside North Korea has been on the rise. In major border cities including Shinuiju in North Pyongan, Hyesan in Yangkang and Musan in North Hamkyung Province, people are able to receive Chinese state channel CCTV-5, and many have been watching the Olympics on it.
“The biggest point of interest right now in Shinuiju is the South Chosun-Japan game,” the source said. He then went on to say that while everyone wants the Korean side to win, Japan has the better team. Asked who on the Korean team he knows, the source said that the information given on TV is all in Chinese so he is unsure, but that he believes the Korean midfield is strong.