listen to erik paartalu discuss his experience in north korea
Bengaluru FC midfielder Erik Paartalu says travelling to North Korea and experiencing local customs last year was a “complete eye opener.”
Paartalu finds himself in rare company, being not only one of the few footballers but people to travel to North Korea.
The former Brisbane Roar midfielder spoke of a harrowing experience which took place on the final day of the team’s stay last night on FNR_Football Nation Radio with Joshua Parish.
“On the last day [North Korea] launched a nuclear weapon over the hotel towards Japan and it landed in the ocean,
“I had no sense of being unsafe while there but when things like that happen you think, ‘please get me out of here’,” Paartalu said.
Paartalu believes the perception towards North Korea is “blown out of proportion” and the people are very friendly and accommodating.
“The people were reasonably friendly everyone was smiling and saying hello in English, but I don’t think they understand what the outside world is like,” Paartalu said.
Paartalu’s Bengaluru FC drew North Korean side Pyongyang 4.25 SC in the AFC Cup last year and progressed through to the next round defeating Pyongyang 3-0 at home in the first leg and being held to a scoreless draw in the second.
Aussies Abroad airs every Tuesday from 8pm (AEDT) hosted by Joshua Parish on FNR_Football Nation Radio.
listen to the full episode here
Athos Sirianos, Nicholas D'Urbano, Josh Parish, Marissa Lordanic, Christopher Chrysostomou & Tim Sperliotis