Instagram Provides Rare Look Inside North Korea [PHOTOS]

Guttenfelder In Pyongyang Viewed from the top of the Tower of the Juche Idea is the 105-story pyramid-shaped Ryugyong Hotel under construction in Pyongyang, North Korea since 1987. Taken March 10, 2013.  David Guttenfelder/ Instagram

What is life like in the hermit nation of North Korea?

David Guttenfelder, the chief photographer in Asia for the Associated Press, is currently on assignment in Pyongyang and is experiencing it first-hand. And now, thanks to photo application Instagram and North Korea’s newly established 3G mobile connection -- which is allowed only to foreigners -- Guttenfelder is able to share with outsiders a glimpse of life in the capital of the world's most reclusive country.

Guttenfelder In Pyongyang A North Korean doctor and a bank of dated video monitors inside a Pyongyang hospital. February 19, 2013.  David Guttenfelder/ Instagram

The new Koryolink 3G network is journalists’ newest tool in "live" reporting from the pariah nation. Media coverage and foreign journalists are strictly monitored, but for the first time, the wireless connection will enable live updates from within the borders of the "Democratic People's Republic."

Guttenfelder In Pyongyang North Koreans ride an escalator past a model of the country's Unha-3 rocket as they enter an exhibition in Pyongyang of KimjongIlia flowers named after the late leader Kim Jong Il. February 17, 2013.  David Guttenfelder/ Instagram

The new network, along with newly allowed cellphones, is North Korea’s latest step in opening up the country.

Jean Lee, AP's Seoul-based Korea bureau chief, also used the Koryolink network to send out her first tweet from the other side of the Demilitarized Zone, the world's most fortified border.

My first tweet using #Koryolink's new mobile #Internet service. Hello world from comms center in #Pyongyang.


Guttenfelder’s pictures are all taken in the capital, Pyongyang, where life is heavily regulated by officials, so photos are reflective of the best living standards and facilities that the nation has to offer.

Guttenfelder also accompanied basketball player Dennis Rodman and Google’s Eric Schmidt on their recent visits.

Guttenfelder in Pyongyang North Korean kids rollerblade at a skating track in Pyongyang. March 8, 2013.  David Guttenfelder/ Instagram

Guttenfelder In Pyongyang Examples of the subdued haircuts allowed by North Koreans on display at a barbershop in Pyongyang. February 19, 2013.  Daivd Guttenfelder/ Instagram

Guttenfelder in Pyongyang This is a tourist-like view from a balcony at the Grand People's Study House. The high-rises, behind the mosaics of two Kim's, is the 3,000-unit Changjon Street apartment building complex that was completed last April. January 9, 2013.  David Guttenfelder/ Instagram

Share this article

More News from IBT MEDIA