What North Korean Official Told Athlete Named Ko Jong-Un

The ruling Kim dynasty are revered within North Korea, where Kim Jong-Un is normally referred to as "Supreme Leader" or "Respected Marshal".

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What North Korean Official Told Athlete Named Ko Jong-Un

The venue for Pyeongchang Winter Olympics scheduled to be held in South Korea


Pyeongchang, South Korea:  When North Korea's chef de mission at the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in the South visited an athletes' village fitness centre he made a point of cheerily greeting each volunteer by name, reading them off their badges.

But Won Gil-U came to a screeching halt when he met a young woman called Ko Jong-Un, a report said.

Her forename matches that of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un, and Won -- who is also Pyongyang's vice sports minister was stunned into silence.

After some moments he found his voice.

"When he turned to me, he stared at my name tag and froze for a few seconds without a word," Ko was quoted as saying by Yonhap news agency.

"Then, he said: 'I wouldn't dare to pronounce your name'. We all broke into hearty laughter."

The ruling Kim dynasty are revered within North Korea, where Kim Jong-Un is normally referred to as "Supreme Leader" or "Respected Marshal".

North Korean children are taught from an early age about the exploits of his father Kim Jong-Il and grandfather Kim Il-Sung, the North's founder, and the two predecessors' portraits are on display in every home and on propaganda billboards throughout the country.

Like some other Korean forenames, Jong-Un can be used for both men and women -- although it is predominantly female.

Another North Korean official asked Ko about her job. She told him she is a student majoring in American culture at Sogang University in Seoul.

"Then he responded: 'All Yankees must be punched'," she said. "This sparked more laughter."


(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)


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