United Nations chief urges denuclearization to North Korea

11 February, 2018, 06:43 | Author: Wade Massey
  • A young performer participates in the opening ceremony of the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang South Korea Friday

It did not mention Kim Yo Jong, the young but influential sister of the North's leader Kim Jong Un, who is also part of Pyongyang's delegation and has been the focus of widespread attention.

This item corrects that Kim Yo Jong is the leader's sister.

North Korea slammed anti-North Korea activists Wednesday for having held a rally against the North's participation in the PyeongChang Winter Olympics when its art troupe arrived in South Korea a day earlier for performances.

"To see it finally happen, it really did not only give me goosebumps, but I think the whole public and I guess the entire world", said Bach.

She was on hand for the opening ceremony which saw the Korean teams enter under a unified flag. South Korea wants a northern neighbour without nukes; North Korea vows to keep its weapons until the United States discards its "hostile" policies against the country.

The North initially had no athletes coming to the Olympics, but the International Olympic Committee allowed 22 as special entries.

"When we arrived at the station we were treated like rock stars", Kim lookalike Howard, dressed in all black, told AFP.

The countries are still technically at war since a 1953 armistice, though they have resumed talks after a year-long standoff between North Korea and the United States in which an exchange of threats between the heads of state elevated tensions and prompted the North's continued missile and nuclear tests. The jet flew with the official Korean standard and the name "North Korea" inscribed on its side.

Vice President Mike Pence is cheering on US speed skaters at the Winter Olympics, before departing South Korea for Washington on Saturday.

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"We are determined to make sure that even in the midst of the powerful background & idealism of the Olympics, the World is reminded of the truth about North Korea", Pence tweeted on Friday.

Moon said improved relations between the Koreas may be a step toward resolving the nuclear standoff.

Moon's office says the North Korean delegates were served traditional food from the Gangwon province, a mountainous coastal area that's home to the Olympic towns of Pyeongchang and Gangneung.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in (at podium) delivers a welcome speech in a reception held before the opening of the PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games on February 9, 2018.

Seating plans shown on television had Pence seated directly opposite the North's Kim Yong Nam at the reception in Pyeongchang.

"But he stayed there the entire time. and talked to Moon and Abe and their spouses, and the North Koreans sat in the back and didn't talk to anybody, and that image is telling".

Analysts noted that Kim Yo Jong was shown holding a blue folder adorned with a gold seal, which she later placed in front of her on the table, leading to speculation in South Korean media that it could contain a personal letter from her brother to the South Korean president.

Kim won Korea's only figure skating gold medal with her performance at the Vancouver Games and while she has always been the hot favourite for the role at Friday's opening ceremony she said it had only been confirmed a couple of months earlier.

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