North Korea opens pilot web portal, glitches remain
Reclusive North Korea has been testing its first web portal for the past month, but so far visitors have not been able to access the entertainment, shopping and free email facilities it promises.
The Naenara (“My Country”) site at http://www.kcckp.net is based in Germany, and links to information on North Korean politics, tourism and trade, along with its official media and “real time” music and movies decorate the home page.
The website, available in English and Korean, says it received more than 14,000 visitors today. But visitors seeking the kind of content usually expected of commercial web portals would have come up empty-handed.
While the ubiquitous martial music of the world’s most militarised state emanated from the page, links to email service and multimedia content were not functioning.
But visitors who registered could browse the latest news – from June – published by the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), a mouthpiece of North Korean leader Kim Jong-il and his communist government.
KCNA has been available on the internet for about five years on the Japan-based site http://www.kcna.co.jp. Another North Korean site, http://www.uriminzokkiri.com, publishes Pyongyang views from China.