North & South Korea agree to participate in Winter Olympic

Kim Trump

GETTYKim Jong-un and Donald Trump have traded insults in the past

In South Korea, it was felt a unified 23-member team would prevent deserving South Korean skaters from participating. "Coming myself from a formerly divided country (Germany), it is a moment that I am also personally looking forward to with great anticipation and great emotion".

The two countries will field a unified women's hockey team, the first time the two sides will compete as one team.

The IOC said it will provide any necessary technical equipment in cooperation with those sports' worldwide federations.

Several South Korean officials greeted the North Koreans at the customs, immigration and quarantine (CIQ) office at Dorasan Station.

The other sports featuring North Korean athletes at the February 9-25 Pyeongchang Games are figure skating, short track speed skating, alpine and cross-country skiing.

Bach said reaching this outcome "was not an easy journey" but that he was proud of what the representatives of the two Koreas, the IOC and the Pyeongchang 2018 Organizing Committee had achieved.

The panel also recommended 51 coaches and 10 medical staff can not be invited to the Olympics which run from February 9 to 25.

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"We will focus our diplomatic capacity on inducing North Korea and the US into a dialogue process so that it could create a virtuous cycle of inter-Korean talks resulting in North Korea-US talks", the foreign ministry in Seoul said on Friday, quoted by the Yonhap news agency.

"The Olympic Games show us what the world could look like, if we were all guided by the Olympic spirit of respect and understanding". He said he hoped the Olympics would "open the world for a brighter future on the Korean peninsula". However, to maintain fairness for opponents, only 22 can suit up for each game.

Their meeting came as Seoul seeks to ease tensions on the peninsula through the North's participation in the PyeongChang Winter Olympics next month.

Earlier this week, the rival Koreas agreed that the 140-member art troupe will perform twice in South Korea during the games amid signs of warming ties between them.

Bach said the International Olympic Committee made "exceptional decisions" to ensure the participation of North Korean athletes since none qualified for the competition.

The 12-member South Korean delegation was suggested to visit the DPRK via an eastern land route for two nights and three days. The Koreas previously marched together at the Opening Ceremonies in 2000, 2004 and 2006.

North and South Korea will join forces in the women's ice hockey at the Pyeongchang Games. Last year, North Korea carried out its sixth and biggest nuclear test explosion and test-fired three intercontinental ballistic missiles, and Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump traded threats of war and crude insults against each other.

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