Associated Press Opens News Bureau in North Korea

Posted January 16th, 2012 at 2:00 am (UTC-5)
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The Associated Press has opened a bureau in the North Korean capital, Pyongyang, becoming the first international news organization with a full-time presence to cover news from the reclusive nation in words, pictures and videos.

AP opened the office Monday, after almost a year of negotiations and less than a month after the death of longtime ruler Kim Jong Il.

AP President and CEO Tom Curley says the organization's newest bureau allows the news agency to “document the people, places and politics” of North Korea across all media platforms at a “critical moment in its history.” Curley says the Pyongyang bureau will operate under the same standards and practices as AP bureaus worldwide.

The bureau expands AP's presence in North Korea, which has remained largely off-limits to international journalists. In 2006, AP was the first international news organization to open a video bureau in Pyongyang.

The president of the state-run Korean Central News Agency said Monday the opening of the AP office was “significant.”

AP's North Korean office will be staffed by two natives of North Korea who will be supervised by two American journalists with broad international experience. The Americans will also train local reporters.