May 29, 2024

About the KCNA databases

The Korea Central News Agency (KCNA) is North Korea’s official state news agency. Currently KCNA publishes news in English and Korean on both a North Korean hosted domain and a Japanese hosted one.

The Japanese site includes the largest archive of KCNA material online, going back to the mid 1990s. Typically, the Japanese website is updated with fresh news 24 hours after the Korean website is updated. It offers no search function and is only accessible from Japanese territory. All content on the site is all reproduced on the KCNA Watch website so researchers may browse and search it conveniently.

Though KCNA’s North Korean hosted site carries the very latest materials, it offers limited search capabilities and article archives. In particular, its archives only go back to 2013, while the search function is limited to 10 character queries. Furthermore, since the purge of Jang Song Thaek, North Korean propagandists have been known to either alter or delete large swathes of content on the site to suit the current political mood. Therefore, the KCNA Watch database provides the only unalterered record of official DPRK media output from the service.

To get the best results out of the two databases, make sure you structure your search queries to take into account: archives exist back to 2013 archives exist back to 1997

(Earlier this site incorrectly claimed the KCNA Archive was accessible back to 1994).