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North Korea’s ‘Goryeo’ in the North-South Korean War

North Korea has labeled South Korea as “Goryeo” during a women’s soccer match between the two Koreas, amid sensitivity over the country’s national anthem at the 2022 Hangzhou Asian Games.

North Korea’s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported on Tuesday that the North’s goal in the women’s soccer quarterfinal match between South Korea and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) at the Hangzhou Asian Games took place on March 30.

“The match ended with the Korean team defeating the Goryeo team by an overwhelming score of 4:1,” the media outlet said, referring to South Korea as “Goryeo” in the subtitle.

North Korea has traditionally referred to South Korea as “South Korea” when referring to itself. The use of the name “Goryeo” in inter-Korean sports competitions is also unusual.

Showing displeasure with the name “North Korea

North Korea is uncomfortable with the name “North Korea” as it is basically based on “South Korea”.

For this reason, during inter-Korean events such as inter-Korean talks and family reunions, our reporters usually use the term “North Korea.” North Korea has generally not had a problem with this, but at the tournament, it expressed strong dissatisfaction.

North Korea’s women’s national soccer team coach Ri Yoo-il reacted strongly to a South Korean reporter referring to the DPRK as the “North Koreans” during a press conference following the team’s quarterfinal victory over South Korea at the Wenzhou Sports Center Stadium in Zhejiang Province, China, on March 30.

“Please correct it to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, not the North Korean side, and call us the ‘DPRK’ team,” Lee said, adding, “Otherwise, I will not answer (the question).”

Earlier, at a press conference following North Korea’s 81-62 loss to South Korea in a women’s basketball game between the two Koreas on March 29, a member of the North Korean team responded to a reporter’s use of the term “North Korea” by saying, “We are not North Korea. We are the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. It’s not right. At the Asian Games, all countries must be called correctly,” he said.

This is not the first time North Korea has demanded that the name “North Korea” be changed to “Democratic People’s Republic of Korea” at international events.

During the 2009 World Cup group stage in South Africa, North Korea’s national soccer team coach Kim Jong Hoon, who traveled to South Korea, said, “The official name of our team is the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea soccer team,” and 사설토토 requested that questions about the team be asked with the correct wording. In 2018, North Korea’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations made a diplomatic issue of the U.S. government-issued tax-free cards that read “North Korea” on them.

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