Koreans view NK participation in Olympics with mixed feelings

Koreans view NK participation in Olympics with mixed feelings

Koreans view NK participation in Olympics with mixed feelings

The ministry said that it will be hard to induce North Korea and the U.S. into a "dialogue process" based on the peaceful momentum created by the resumption of inter-Korean talks on Pyongyang's participation in the Winter Olympics.

On Tuesday, a team of South Korean officials went to the North for logistical preparations at tourist and ski resorts where the two sides have agreed to hold pre-Olympic cultural events and train non-Olympic skiers together.

Tensions have eased as the two Koreas recently agreed to the North's participation in the February 9-25 PyeongChang Winter Olympics, which will be held in the South, after holding a series of talks, the first such meetings in more than two years.

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Some have derisively dubbed these Games the "Pyongyang Olympics", given how the few North Korean athletes, along with the cheerleaders and the art troupe that are also on the way to PyeongChang, have stolen the thunder of the host nation.

An advance team of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) on Monday toured the performance facilities in the South Korean capital to prepare for concerts during the upcoming South Korea-hosted Winter Olympics. "I don't intend to field the 12 athletes from North Korea on a rotating basis".

The issue remains an emotionally-charged one for many in South Korea, with Seoul saying a landmark 2015 repatriations deal with Japan did not mean victims' demands. On Jan. 1, Kim Jong Un, chair of the Workers' Party of Korea and leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, called for direct talks with the Republic of Korea - without the presence of U.S officials, whose troops have occupied south Korea for almost seven decades.

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Some specific plans, including for a joint women's ice hockey team and marching under a united flag, have proven controversial, with conservatives and younger South Koreans upset that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is stealing the spotlight. "North Korea is using the Olympics as a weapon", she told NBC News.

"I am really looking forward to some of the legends still competing that are coming back, like Lindsay Vonn (in women's alpine skiing)", Bach said. "Let us come together to protect and expand [inter-Korean] dialogue, just as we would protect the flame of a candle from the wind", South Korean President Moon Jae-in said on January 22.

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The Olympics provided a "precious chance to open the door" for talks to resolve the nuclear issue and establish peace on the peninsula, Moon said at the presidential Blue House.

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