PYONGYANG, North Korea – North Korea's most famous luxury hotel is operating normally despite a fire earlier this month around a raised walkway linking its twin towers that was widely reported abroad.
Officials did not reply to requests to provide details about the fire, including whether anyone was injured, or allow The Associated Press to examine or photograph the fire-damaged area. But all functions of the hotel, which has been accepting guests as usual, were back to normal. Green netting was put up over the damaged walkway on Sunday.
The fire broke out on June 11 at the Koryo Hotel in central Pyongyang.
The 43-story hotel is a local landmark and is frequently used by foreigners, tourists and VIPs. Witnesses said flames and large plumes of smoke could be seen leaping out from the upper part of the hotel, though one person who spoke to The AP the day of the fire said it appeared to have been put out by late that night.
Operations of the hotel were restored to normal the same day, though some damage and darkened walls from smoke were still apparent from outside near the hotel's raised walkway. The fire, which was in a limited area toward the top of the hotel, did not force the hotel to stop operations. A revolving restaurant at the top of the hotel was also functioning the whole time.
Although reported widely by foreign media, including The AP, the fire was not reported in North Korea's state-run media.