Japan wants more of its soccer fans in North Korea

AP, Monday 31 Oct 2011

Japan wants North Korea to allow more Japanese fans into the country for next month’s World Cup qualifier in Pyongyang

Japanese football fans
File photo: Japanese football fans wearing national football team uniforms react after their team's going down one goal in the World Cup 2010 first round match between Japan and Netherlands, at the Tokyo Dome on June 19, 2010. (Photo: AFP)

Kyodo news agency reports Monday that Japan Football Association general secretary Kozo Tashima says the number of Japanese that North Korea would allow into the country is “nowhere near acceptable.”

Japan faces North Korea in Pyongyang on Nov. 15. It will be the first time Japan has played in North Korea since 1989.

The Japanese government has been advising citizens to refrain from visiting the country since Tokyo imposed economic sanctions following a missile launch by North Korea in 2006.

But Japan Sports Minister Masaharu Nakagawa said last week it would be good if supporters could organize a tour.

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