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Photos: North Korean Olympic cheerleaders react to a Kim Jong-un impersonator

By Johnny Simon

During the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, there have been reports and sightings of a man impersonating North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. He appeared briefly at the opening ceremonies with a red-hat-sporting Donald Trump impersonator in tow, before being ushered out.

It was only a matter of time before he ran into the actual North Korean presence at the Olympics, in the form of their much-discussed cheerleaders.

At a preliminary women’s hockey match today (Feb. 14) between the unified Korean team and Japan, the impersonator positioned himself in front of the cheering section, before being jostled out of the arena.

He identified himself only as Howard and said he was an Australian living in Hong Kong. Speaking to Yahoo News, he said his goal for the Olympics was to “create some good political satire.”

The faces of the women in the cheering section ranged from bemused to shocked, to completely neutral.

AP Photo/Eric Talmadge
A Kim Jong Un impersonator, calling himself only Howard from Australia, walks in front of fans waving a unification flag at the Korea-Japan women’s ice hockey game at the 2018 Winter Olympics.
Yonhap via EPA
“Howard”, a Kim Jong-un impersonator appears in front of the North Korean cheerleading squad during the Women Ice Hockey preliminary round match between Korea and Japan.
Reuters
A Kim Jong-un impersonator stands next to the North Korean cheerleaders.
Reuters/Lucy Nicholson
Howard is escorted from the arena by security personnel.