CNN's Will Ripley, Justin Robertson and Tim Schwartz are the only Western broadcasters reporting from North Korea since it conducted a ballistic missile test on Sunday, the first one of 2017.

We'll keep updating this story to bring you their latest dispatches as they document their trip on television and Instagram.

Welcome inside the world's most reclusive country.


On Thursday, millions of North Koreans are marking what would have been the 75th birthday of late leader Kim Jong Il.

Many will remember their former leader at the Kumsusan Palace of the Sun, where the Kim and his father Kim Il Sung were laid to rest.

The Day of the Shining Star is a two-day celebration packed with concerts, fireworks and military displays.

Here, a North Korean female soldier stands guard at the Mansu Hill Grand Monument, as her fellow soldiers pay respects.

While military service for women has long been voluntary, it was reportedly recently made mandatory in a bid to bolster the nations armed forces. North Korean men are required to serve for 10 years beginning at age 17.


The crew were in Pyongyang's Kim Il Sung square -- the location of many of the country's large and widely broadcasted military displays and parades -- and some of the surrounding areas.

On Wednesday, the team also talked to some North Koreans and asked them about recent missile launches.

Sunday's missile launch has been covered extensively in North Korean media.

The crew visited some of Pyongyang's most important landmarks.

At the monument, flowers were on sale to commemorate the birthday of the former leader Kim Jong Il, who would've turned 75 this week.

In North Korea, Thursday is a public holiday, known as the Day of the Shining Star.

Nearby, people in Pyongyang were moving around the city by bus and taxi.

CNN photojournalist Justin Robertson captured this scene over the Taedong River.

It's a struggle to get connected in Pyongyang as Will noted.

Here's one of his first reports of the day for television.


On Tuesday, the crew captured moments from their journey to Pyongyang.

There's only one flight a day and the plane isn't the biggest.

Here's the view from the window before the crew arrived in Pyongyang.

Follow Will, Justin and Tim on Instagram to get their updates. CNN's Joshua Berlinger contributed to this report


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