FC: North Korea embraces Internet gambling (I am not making this up)

From: Declan McCullagh (declanat_private)
Date: Fri Mar 29 2002 - 06:29:04 PST

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    Date: Fri, 29 Mar 2002 08:47:04 -0500
    From: "R. A. Hettinga" <rahat_private>
    Subject: Laugh-out-Loud Funny: N Korea seals Net gambling venture
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    Friday, March 29, 2002
    N Korea seals Net gambling venture
    North Korea, the most socialist of countries, has turned to the unlikely
    arena of Internet gambling to promote a mass gymnastics exhibition being
    touted as a global tourist attraction.
    Although the Internet is virtually unknown in the Stalinist state, a joint
    venture has been formed with a South Korean firm allowing overseas gamblers
    to bet money through an online lottery based in the North.
    The lottery - specifics of which remain sketchy - is aimed at promoting the
    Arirang Festival, a huge-scale mass-entertainment display beginning in
    Pyongyang next month.
    Arirang organisers said they were keen to use the festival, which will see
    100,000 people perform in Pyongyang's May 1 Stadium, as an attraction to
    bring foreign tourists into the cash-strapped country.
    The gambling venture would allow Internet users to log on to a North
    Korean-based site and use credit cards to buy virtual instant lottery
    cards, explained a statement released to foreign reporters allowed into
    Pyongyang to view preparations for the Arirang event.
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