World / Asia-Pacific

DPRK kicks off first int'l air show

(Xinhua) Updated: 2016-09-24 18:56

WONSAN, DPRK - The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) on Saturday kicked off its first international air show at a newly upgraded airport in the eastern coastal city of Wonsan.

The Wonsan International Friendship Air Festival, the first of its kind in the DPRK, runs from Saturday through Sunday at Kalma International Airport, which was redesigned and reconstructed from a military airfield to promote tourism.

Vice Minister of the Ministry of External Economic Affairs of the DPRK Yun Yong-sok and founder of the DPRK tourism company British Juche Travel Services David Thompson addressed the opening ceremony.

The two-day air festival includes aerobatic flying shows performed by the Korean People's Army Air Force and the country's state-owned national flag carrier Air Koryo. Professional parachutists and sportsmen from Pyongyang Air Club will present a parachuting display.

Tourists have the opportunities to participate in the festival by choosing a plane for a 30-minute sightseeing flight. They can also experience skydiving with the help of the professional players.

Aircraft mobilized and showcased in the festival include a Hughes 500 helicopter, Ilyushin Il-18 passenger planes, MiG-29 and Su-25 jet fighters, Tupolev Tu-134 and Tu-154 airliners, among many others. Most planes on display were Russian-made.

In addition, there will be a show by the Kangwon Province Art Troupe and a mass dancing gala with local youth and students.

The DPRK has called the festival "a non-political event organized to bring together aviation and air sports enthusiasts from around the world to share in their passion."

Wonsan, located on the eastern coast of the DPRK, is the capital of Kangwon Province. The DPRK government has committed to building the port city into a world-class tourist destination for travelers across the world.

In 2014 the Presidium of the DPRK's Supreme People's Assembly decided to establish a Wonsan-Mt. Kumgang international tourist zone in a bid to boost tourism.

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