If you look beneath the media and political hype, there has been quite an upturn in the work and energy of DPRK friendship societies in my local area. One is the NZ-DPRK Society. Established in 1973, the long-standing chair was the Reverend Don Borrie. After he retired, Tim Beal took over. Incidentally, by far the best book on the DPRK is Tim Beal’s North Korea: The Struggle Against American Power (Pluto 2005). It carefully pulls apart much of the sheer fake news about the DPRK.

In Australia we also have the Australia-DPRK Friendship and Cultural Society. It too has been around since the 1970s, but has recently gained renewed interest and energy.

These groups are certainly growing: in August 2017, 180 delegates from 61 countries gathered in the DPRK for a large solidarity conference.

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