North Korea’s massive May Day Stadium is set to reopen this year, a tour company specializing in travel to North Korea said through a blog post.
Beijing-based Koryo Tours said in a blog post at the company’s website that the stadium was “set to re-open this year,” though it did not specify a date.
The stadium, officially the Rungrado 1st of May Stadium in Pyongyang, is considered the largest in the world with seating of 150,000. Though used for athletic contests such as football matches, the venue is best known as the site of the Arirang Festival (also known as the Mass Games).
In September 2013 North Korean leader Kim Jong Un ordered that the stadium be refurbished, calling it a monument to his father and grandfather’s efforts to build “Juche-oriented sports.” Priorities for the project reportedly included providing more comfortable seating and bringing turf up to international standards.
The Mass Games were cancelled last year as refurbishment took place, reportedly mobilizing 10,000 soldiers to carry out the task. State media announced the completion of the refurbishments in November.
The Mass Games have been cancelled yet again for 2015, however, with no reason specified but strict ongoing Ebola quarantine measures, which have effectively banned tourism to the North, remaining in place.
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Featured Image: May Day Stadium, Pyongyang by D-Stanley on 2010-10-08 16:02:57