October 31, 2020

The daily life of a Swedish diplomat in North Korea

For embassy staff, a stint in Pyongyang is full of frustration, loneliness and limitations

Whenever North Korea and the U.S. need to engage diplomatically, or when Scandinavian tourists are experiencing mishaps, the Swedish embassy in North Korea plays a critical role.

The embassy is, however, staffed by just two diplomats and, as a recent interview one of them conducted with Swedish national radio reveals, their interactions with locals are limited and daily lives are ridden with inconveniences, frustrations and loneliness.