Winter Olympics opening ceremony to focus on peace

Winter Olympics opening ceremony to focus on peace

North Korea has asked that the South refuel the Mangyongbong-92, which has been anchored at the South Korean eastern port of Mukho since Tuesday after transporting its art troupe to the South.

It remained unclear whether Kim would be carrying a message from her brother to Moon, who has said he is willing to meet Kim Jong Un if he is reasonably sure that such a meeting would help end the crisis over the North's nuclear weapons.

"Our delegation's visit to South Korea is only to take part in the Olympics and hail its successful holding".

The holiday, which is observed by South and North Korea, celebrates the countries' independence from Japan.

North Korea will have 22 athletes competing at the Pyeongchang Games, but the total number of North Koreans crossing the border is more than 500. Although North Korea said its delegates had no willingness to meet Pence, the vice president again did not rule out the possibility of a meeting on the sidelines of the games.

In North Korea's dynastic system, which upholds the Kim family's "bloodline" as a sacred leadership qualification, Kim Yo Jong wields a singular clout that can not be matched by any non-relative members of the elite, according to North Korea analysts.

Winter Olympics opening ceremony to focus on peace

"President Moon plans to hold a meeting and have lunch with the North Korean delegation on February 10", the spokesman told a press briefing.

"We will not allow North Korean propaganda to hijack the message and imagery of the Olympic Games", the vice president continued. A potential escalation of sanctions could be the USA blacklisting Chinese banks accused of providing North Korea access to the worldwide financial system and facilitating sanctions evasion.

Whether Mr. Pence or Mr. Abe are open to even a brief discussion with the North Koreans is unclear.

The Security Council has unanimously boosted sanctions on North Korea since 2006 in a bid to choke funding for Pyongyang's nuclear and ballistic missile programs, banning exports including coal, iron, lead, textiles and seafood, and capping imports of crude oil and refined petroleum products.

North Korean leader Kim reviewed the display of military might, the first to take place since April a year ago, from a balcony above the plaza. "We will have to wait and see exactly how that unfolds", he said. "The People's Army must keep in high alert and redouble its preparations for battle as the United States and its followers are making a fuss around the Korean Peninsula". Unlike the North´s last parade in April 2017 state television did not show the event live, instead airing it hours later.

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