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North Korea cancels invitations for foreign media hoping to cover military parade: reports

FILE - In this April 15, 2017, file photo, soldiers march across Kim Il Sung Square during a military parade in Pyongyang, North Korea. North Korea is preparing to stage a major event to mark the 70th anniversary of the founding of its military on Feb. 8, 2018 - just one day before the opening ceremony of the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in South Korea. AP Photo/Wong Maye-E, File

Some journalists who were planning to attend an upcoming military celebration in North Korea say that their invitations were abruptly cancelled by the authorities.

North Korea is reportedly planning a large parade and celebration in honour of the founding of their military on Feb. 8, the day before the Opening Ceremony at the PyeongChang Winter Olympics in South Korea. Although it has for the past few decades celebrated this event in April, North Korea this year decided to celebrate in February instead.

READ MORE: North Korea to hold military celebration on eve of Olympics

Jeremy Koh, a reporter for Channel News Asia, a Singapore-based outlet, tweeted Tuesday that his channel had planned to attend, but the invitation was cancelled.

“How do we know? We were all geared up to travel to Pyongyang next week,” he wrote.

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Andreas Cichowicz, a German reporter, said that the invitation for German broadcaster ARD was also revoked.

CNN also reported Wednesday that its sources said that foreign media will be barred from covering the upcoming military event. Banning foreign press ensures that the only images the world sees of the parade are those produced and distributed by North Korean state-controlled media.

Multiple news outlets, including the Wall Street Journal, have used satellite imagery to show troops mobilizing and practising alongside artillery for the upcoming event in Pyongyang.

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