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He was North Korea's World Cup striker, competing against football powerhouses like Portugal and Brazil in the biggest sporting event in the world.

But Jong Tae-Se was born and raised in Japan and has never known life in North Korea.

He is a Zainichi - an ethnic Korean who lives in Japan but remains loyal to the Communist North.

There are more than 600,000 Zainichi Koreans in Japan, living in and around big cities like Osaka and Tokyo.

Some have never visited their homeland of North Korea, while others have escaped with deep scars.

On this edition of 101 East, we enter Jong's world and the lives of other Zainichi who still have close ties to North Korea.

This episode of 101 East airs from Thursday, August 19, 2010 at the following times GMT: Thursday: 1230; Friday: 0300; Saturday: 0530, 1730; Sunday: 1130; Monday: 0030; Tuesday: 0600, 1430; Wednesday: 0830; Thursday: 0630.

Source: Al Jazeera