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When we think of North Korea, we tend to think in political and economic terms, ultimately often ignoring the cultural and social realities of daily life in the country. The lived experiences of North Koreans are brushed to the side, creating a unidimensional and simplistic view that doesn’t accurately reflect what it is like to live there. One particular area where our knowledge is limited is in childhood - what is it like to grow up (for the elite and privileged) in North Korea?

Not many outsiders get a chance to visit North Korea. For those who make it inside North Korea's borders, photography is highly restricted and controlled. Photographer Tariq Zaidi travelled across 8 of the 9 provinces in the DPRK - from Dandong (on the Chinese border) in the north to the DMZ in the south, across the country from Pyongyang to Wonsan on the east coast and north towards Chongjin and Hoeryong near the Chinese Russian border to take a closer look at this country. Here are just a few images (which were not deleted by his North Korean minders/guides) showing a glimpse of what one rarely sees of North Korean life as a child…

To see more of my work from Growing up in North Korea please copy/paste this link for full story @bbcnews

Music: “Tortured by Doubt” composed and played by the incredibly talented Othon @OthonPanMuzik

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