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Winter Olympics ban on Russians upheld

09 February 2018

North Korea's state news agency has quoted a foreign ministry official dismissing the possibility of any meeting.

South Korea, however, has coveted a North Korean presence at the Olympics for a long time, and it's unlikely it was not prepared for this moment, said John Furlong, who was CEO of the Vancouver Olympic Organizing Committee. Almost 50 sailors aboard the Cheonan were killed.

Hosting an informal lunch for the high level North Korean delegation avoids any protocol format where only one main speaker has a voice.

South Korea, though, is hosting a Winter Games - and on Friday night an opening ceremony - attended by North Korea and the US, two countries that have threatened to destroy each other. World cross-country skiing champion Sergey Ustyugov and world biathlon gold medalist Anton Shipulin will also miss the Olympics.

Their collaboration and demonstration of unity at the Olympic Games may pave the waye for further cultural and humanitarian exchanges between the two sides.

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"Explicitly speaking, we have no intention to meet with the USA side during the stay in South Korea". Pence toured the facility and met with Air Force Lt. Gen. In Washington on Thursday, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and China's top diplomat Yang Jiechi reaffirmed the commitment of Washington and Beijing to exert pressure in Pyongyang over its nuclear weapons, the State Department said. He also was briefed on the capabilities of the base if "diplomacy fails".

The US has made it clear it's not pleased about North Korea's overtures to the South. Organisers have had to call in military personnel to replace them.

Chan had some advice for the first-time Olympian. "And they've seen multiple ballistic missiles land within their economic zone in the Sea of Japan", Pence later told reporters. "Not that we're making a political statement, we're just here to win".

USA officials have not ruled out the possibility that the vice president might meet a North Korean official at the Olympics.

"I said something like 'Hey, Ju Sik hyeong, let's take a photo together!' " Kam said after training Tuesday.

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"Regarding Iran, we can confirm that all participants will be able to keep the phones", the spokesperson said, adding, however, that the North Koreans would be requested not to take the devices home.

The team of 12 North Koreans and 23 South Koreans was composed last month as the Koreas agreed upon a package of reconciliation steps following a year of heightened nuclear tensions that triggered fears of war on the Korean Peninsula.

One participant who caught the attention of everyone was Kim Yo-jong - the influential sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un - who is leading the North Korean delegation with Ri Sun-kwon, the head of Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Country of the DPRK (North Korea's official name).

"Although the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) was suspended, the IOC nevertheless chose to offer individual athletes the opportunity to participate in the Winter Games under prescribed conditions - a process that was created to balance the IOC's interest in the global fight against doping and the interests of individual athletes from Russia".

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Winter Olympics ban on Russians upheld